Metropolitan Bank Holding in New York plans to fully exit the crypto-asset business.
The $6.4 billion-asset company said in a press release that the decision “follows a careful review” and reflect recent developments in the crypto space and “material changes” in the regulatory environment regarding banks’ involvement in the business.
Metropolitan said it has four active institutional crypto-asset related clients that account for about 1.5% of total revenues and 6% of total deposits. The relationships are limited to providing debit card, payment and account services.
The bank has no outstanding loans to the clients, has no crypto assets on its balance sheet and does not market or sell crypto assets to customers.
The plan is to orchestrate an orderly exit this year.
The announcement “represents the culmination of a process that began in 2017, when we decided to pivot away from crypto and not grow the business,” Mark DeFazio, the company’s president and CEO, said in the release.
“Crypto-related clients, assets and deposits have never represented a material portion of the company’s business and have never exposed the company to material financial risks,” DeFazio added. “We remain focused on growing our core business and delivering superior value for all of our stakeholders.”
The announcement comes at a time when several high-profile crypto firms have shut down or filed for bankruptcy protection.
Separately, Signature Bank in New York said it was going to run off a large number of digital asset deposits, while Silvergate Capital in La Jolla, Calif., said last week that $8 billion of crypto-related deposits left its bank in the fourth quarter.