Coinbase, the first crypto exchange to issue stock publicly in the U.S., has had a rocky couple of months. Government data reveals that company insiders and early investors have been part of a significant selloff.
Per beneficial ownership data gathered by the Securities and Exchange Commission and easier to browse on Dataroma, major players sold $40,631,394 worth of COIN over the course of December. The SEC requires these disclosures of company officers and directors, as well as any shareholders who possess 10% or more of the company's outstanding stock.
In the three months to date, total sales from insiders amounted to $331,744,516. Those insiders reported zero purchases during either timeframe.
Co-founder and board director Fred Ehrsam, now also the co-founder of crypto VC firm Paradigm, sold COIN worth $31,369,991 over the course of December. In the same timeframe, chief product officer Surojit Chatterjee sold $9,007,797 worth of Coinbase stock, while chief accounting officer Jennifer Jones sold $253,606.
According to NASDAQ, Coinbase's all-time high was within days of its April listing, hitting roughly $388. More recently, it peaked at just under $370 a share on November 9, alongside Bitcoin's all-time high.
The SEC data shows that Coinbase saw a major insider selloff in early November, featuring many players on the 8th and the 15th. The 4th, however, saw Ehrsam make a single sale worth $63,001,342.
December saw COIN drop from $315 to $252. Today, January 7, COIN is bouncing around the low $220s, with a market cap of $50.095 billion. Relative to that total market cap and daily average volume of over 3 million shares, the sales by insiders are relatively small.
A spokesperson for Coinbase told The Block, "As noted multiple times: all Coinbase insider sales are done through pre-approved and pre-scheduled 10b5-1 plans that are approved by our exec team and board of directors, and shared with the SEC."
As Coinbase's November 9 peak reflected Bitcoin's all-time high, its more recent performance appears to reflect broader declines in both crypto and traditional equities markets.
Updated January 10: This article has been updated to include a statement that a Coinbase representative sent to The Block after initial publication.
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