SEC Chief Gary Gensler (Credit: J. Scott Applewhite)

SEC Named 16 Cryptos As Unregistered Securities Between Binance and Coinbase Lawsuits


  • The financial watchdog said 16 cryptocurrencies count as securities according to documents filed at a federal court.
  • Tokens like SOL, MATIC, and ADA were named in lawsuits against Binance and Coinbase alleging violation of U.S. law.
  • Chair Gary Gensler told CNBC that there’s no need for additional digital currencies since the Dollar and other fiat currencies are already digital.

SOL, ADA, MATIC, and several other cryptocurrencies were named unregistered securities in two separate but similar lawsuits filed by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

The tokens were mentioned in court documents alleging that crypto exchanges Binance and Coinbase operated unregistered securities exchanges. In the case of Binance, both the platform and its CEO Changpeng ‘CZ’ Zhao were subjects of the allegations. Binance saw nearly $70 million in outflows shortly after and net outflows reached over $1 billion 24 hours later, per blockchain intelligence startup Nansen.

As of ~5:30pm CET on June 6th, one day after the SEC announced it was filing charges against Binance entities and Binance CEO CZ, net daily outflows from Binance’s on-chain wallets amounted -1.36bn USD or 2.5% of the USD 54bn balance attributed to Binance on-chain.

Nansen analysts Aurelie Barthere and Philip Grushyn

Coinbase was accused of breaking securities law and offering unregistered assets but its CEO Brian Armstrong was exempt from allegations.

In total, 16 cryptocurrencies – BNB, BUSD, SOL, ADA, MATIC, FIL, SAND, AXS, MANA, CHZ, FLOW, ICP, NEAR, VGX, DASH, NEXO, ATOM, And COTI – were classified as unregistered securities.

These tokens boast a combined market cap north of $100 billion at press time. BNB, ADA, SOL, and MATIC each rank in the top 10 cryptocurrencies per CoinMarketCap rankings. While MATIC – the native asset of Ethereum scaling solution Polygon – was classified as a security, ETH was not leaving room for speculation as to why.

SEC Gary Gensler – US Doesnt Need More Digital Currencies

Chair Gary Gensler dodged answering “Yes or No” when asked by Congress whether ETH counts as security or not. While Gensler’s clear answer on the matter remains unknown, the commission chair made it clear that the U.S. does not need more digital currencies.

Gensler questioned the underlying value of “these crypto tokens” and argued that American investors already have access to digital currencies in the Dollar.

Chair Gensler added that crypto businesses must come in and register in compliance with existing law issued by Congress to protect U.S. investors. Crypto entities have insisted that the commission does not provide a clear path for businesses that intend on registering.

2. There is no path to “come in and register” – we tried, repeatedly – so we don’t list securities. We reject the vast majority of assets we review.

– Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong after today’s lawsuit