BNB, the native token of the Binance Smart Chain network, now trades at $500, a price point not seen since the May 2021 crash that sent BNB from an all-time high (ATH) of $690 to a low of $262, representing a 62% decline. The cryptocurrency market capitalization is also up by 2.44% to currently stand at $2.16 trillion as of the time of this writing.
BNB has been rallying over the last 4 weeks along with the altcoin market despite the regulatory scrutiny Binance is facing over the world. BNB has rallied over 64% in the last 4 weeks from trading at $304 to currently stand at $500 according to coinmarketcap.
BNB trading at $500 now puts the market capitalization of the coin at approximately $84 billion. The coin is ranked 4th by market capitalization as Cardano’s ADA flipped BNB for the 3rd spot on news of its smart contract launch.
Data shows traders have mixed emotions about BNB’s future given Binance’s regulatory troubles and the new mandatory KYC policy that was announced on Friday. This is why there is more interest in Solana’s native token SOL, a competing smart contract platform, which reached an all-time high of $81.81 on the 21st of August.
Although the bullish trend in SOL’s price can be attributed to a recent $70 million crowdfund to support its decentralized exchange (DEX), Mango Markets, and the launch of a well-subscribed NFT project, another reason could be investor sentiment shifting from BNB to SOL.
Binance is facing a lot of regulatory pressure which has caused the platform to shut down its derivatives trading to its European and Hong Kong clients. On August 18, De Nederlandsche Bank, the Netherlands’ Central Bank, issued a warning to Binance after concluding that the exchange offered crypto services to local residents. The authority alleges that the company is not acting in compliance with the country’s Anti-Money-Laundering and Anti-Terrorist-Financing Act. These are only a few of the regulatory and compliance woes of Binance.
However, Binance seems to be striving to be more regulatory compliant as the company has been making big moves to improve its regulatory team. Last week, Binance hired Greg Monahan, former US Treasury Criminal Investigator, as Global Money Laundering Reporting Officer (GMLRO). This is one of many appointments which includes Jonathan Farnell as Director of Compliance, former FATF executives Rick McDonell and Josée Nadeau as compliance and regulatory advisors and former US Senator Max Baucus as policy and government relations advisor.
Binance stated it has improved its regulatory team by 500% since 2020 and it plans to improve the team by another 1000% before the end of the year.