US Government Shutdown Hampers Crypto Progress on Wall Street

The US Government Shutdown has now entered into the fourth week, making it the longest shut down in the recorded US history.

The shutdown has resulted in the closure of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC). The closure of the two regulatory bodies has put many key developments, approvals, and services involving cryptocurrencies on hold.

The biggest impact was the delay of Bitcoin’s future market, Bakkt, which was due for launch, but the company was unable to secure the approvals before December 22, 2018, when the shutdown began.

The next set date for launch was recently shifted to January 2, which is yet to be officially announced. The lack of approval has not deterred the determination of the company as it continued building its network and acquired a part of independent futures commission merchant Rosenthal Collins Group (RCG)

Bakkt CEO, Kelly Loeffler said,

“We made great progress in December, and we’ll continue to onboard customers as we await the ‘green light.’”

Many Startups Are in A State of Limbo

Apart from the Bakkt launch delay, many upcoming crypto startups are also in a state of limbo, waiting for the government shutdown to end and furloughed federal employees to return to work.

ErisX, a trading platform which raised $27.5 Million in investments and aims to regulate the futures market and clearinghouse, requires approval from the CFTC.

The company CEO, Thomas Chiapas said,

“ErisX’s interaction with the CFTC has been both positive and productive. During this government shutdown, we have continued our platform development efforts. We look forward to this current impasse being resolved and re-engaging with [CFTC] staff on our DCO [derivatives clearing organization] application.”

The State of Crypto In United States is Unclear

Apart from the government shutdown, the state of the crypto-related service provider in the US is still waiting for increased clarity and official guidance on how to safely handle digital assets.

Many crypto related exchanges and ICO offerings have faced the wrath of SEC in the past, which made many early birds of the crypto realm to shift their base from the United States towards Europe and South Asia.

The understanding and acceptance level for cryptocurrencies have increased significantly over the years. However, SEC is still not very clear with their plans.

Vince Molinari, the co-founder of the regulated trading platform Templum, told that initiatives the SEC may have planned, such as guidance on custody, are likely to be delayed. He said,

“I think the entire space gets pushed back. It could be a quarter or two before things go back, it could be longer depending on how long the shutdown’s in effect.”


The US government shutdown has entered into the fourth week, making it the longest in the history. The shutdown means a complete halt of any government-related operations and approvals. This is costing many new projects and startups delays as there is no end in sight.

Hopefully, the government shutdown would get over sooner than later, and all the projects waiting for approval would get back on track.