Babel Finance suspends withdrawals, citing 'unusual liquidity pressures'

Quick Take

  • Babel Finance suspended client withdrawals on Friday amid turbulence in crypto markets. 
  • The Asia-based crypto financial services firm cited “unusual liquidity pressures.”

Babel Finance, the Asia-based crypto financial services firm, suspended client withdrawals five days after a similar move by Celsius triggered a fresh bout of turbulence in crypto markets. 

"Due to the current situation, Babel Finance is facing unusual liquidity pressures," Babel said in a notice on its website on Friday. “During this period, redemptions and withdrawals from Babel Finance products will be temporarily suspended.”

A spokesperson for Babel said it's taking action to best protect the interests of clients. The firm promised a follow-up announcement once normal service has resumed.

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Crypto markets were rocked at the top of the week as crypto lending platform Celsius halted withdrawals. This applied further downward pressure to crypto prices, amid a choppy macroeconomic backdrop as the Federal Reserve raised interest rates by three-quarters of a percentage point on Wednesday, the biggest hike since 1994.

Against this backdrop, crypto hedge fund Three Arrows Capital (3AC) was margin called this week and failed to meet its obligations, according to three people who spoke to The Block. As a result, there are fears of contagion for businesses with exposure to 3AC.


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About Authors

Andrew Rummer is executive editor for The Block Pro, based in London. He was previously managing editor at Bloomberg News and led special projects at Finimize. He has a degree in engineering from the University of Oxford. Follow him on Twitter at @AJRummer.
Adam Morgan is a reporter covering cryptocurrency, financial markets, and economics – anything from price movements, earnings reports, and inflation to the U.S. Federal Reserve interest rate decisions and everything in between. Adam is based in London.