Binance prohibited Visa and Mastercard cards issued in Russia, causing crypto trade volumes to fall. While Russian citizens still have access to cryptocurrency exchanges, sanctions on traditional payment channels appear to be limiting their capacity to trade.
Whereas most crypto exchanges reject blanket bans on Russian consumers, many of them are not taking payments from sanctioned banks and businesses, reducing Russian’s access to cryptocurrency. Individuals are also hesitant of putting their money in bitcoin.
Visa, Mastercard and American Express have suspended operations in Russia, citing U.S. sanctions as the reason. Many of the international banks have almost stopped doing business in the country.
A discrepancy between the ruble and hryvnia-denominated crypto trading was also highlighted by Kaiko. BTC-UAH buying jumped, indicating that traders in Ukraine were flocking to crypto in the face of financial turmoil.
Trading volumes in Ukraine have stayed high, with Tether in particular showing strong demand. As the hryvnia plummeted, citizens were spotted paying up to a 20% premium for the stablecoin.
Notably the exclusion of Russian institutions from the SWIFT network, BTC-RUB volumes began to rise. Sanctions imposed by the West on Moscow are the toughest they’ve ever been, virtually cutting Russia off from major global financial markets.
The U.S. recently put a ban on Russian oil, with that Europe is also thinking of doing the same. Given that oil is Russia’s major export, this would further destabilise the Russian economy.
Considering the currency market, the ruble is still having a lot of tension. It is now selling at record lows by the dollar and the euro.