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Matrixport: Binance Plea Deal Boosts Approval Odds for Bitcoin Spot ETF

Jai Pratap
Last updated: | 1 min read
Source: AdobeStock / JorgeEduardo

Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao has entered a guilty plea, agreeing to a $50 million fine, while Binance itself is set to pay a $4.3 billion penalty.

CZ’s sentencing hearing is scheduled for February 23, 2024, where he may face prison time of up to 18 months.

This comes amidst allegations of money laundering violations, conspiracy to conduct an unlicensed money-transmitting business, and U.S. sanctions violations, with transactions totaling $898 million falling under this category.

Matrixport analyst Markus Thielen believes that the settlement is a favorable outcome for CZ and Binance and may eventually boost approval odds for Bitcoin spot etf.

Binance to Maintain its Position as a Top Crypto Exchange

Despite CZ stepping down and the fine amount being lower than initially feared $10 billion, Matrixport’s analysis suggests that Binance is poised to maintain its position as one of the top three exchanges over the next 2-3 years.

However, there may be imminent pressure to ‘right-size’ the company, which currently employs around 6,000 people.

The plea deal does not include the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Nevertheless, it is deemed a favorable outcome for CZ and Binance, especially considering the swift regulatory actions following the conclusion of the FTX/SBF trial.

The regulatory impact extends beyond Binance, potentially catalyzing increased compliance efforts across the industry.

As per the analyst, more exchanges are expected to enhance their compliance programs and participate in surveillance-sharing agreements.

This development is seen as instrumental in securing approval for a spot Bitcoin ETF in the United States.

Binance Plea Agreement Boosts Bitcoin Spot ETF Approval Odds to 100%

The plea agreement, according to the analyst, has elevated expectations for a spot Bitcoin ETF approval to 100%.
It forces the industry to adhere to rules similar to traditional financial firms.

This shift toward compliance may, as per the analyst, strengthen the case for Bitcoin adoption among institutional investors, positioning it as a safe-haven asset in their portfolios.

Looking ahead, as per the Matrixport analyst, the industry may witness a transformative shift from unregulated exchanges to fully regulated venues, catering primarily to institutional investors.

With institutional demand on the rise and regulatory tailwinds, 2024 is anticipated to be a pivotal year for Bitcoin, with the possibility of CZ returning during the next bear market in 2026.