Polymarket Relaunches but Excludes U.S. Traders


Key Takeaways

Polymarket has announced a geoblocking policy which will limit U.S. users to viewing markets only.
Users who reside outside of the United States will still be able to trade on Polymarket’s prediction markets.
This decision is likely influenced by the same CFTC order that forced the closure of certain markets on Polymarket.

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Polymarket, a crypto-based predictions market, has announced that it has relaunched its site with limited access for U.S. users.

Restricted Access

Polymarket has announced its relaunch, but will limit U.S. users to view-only access. The news represents a change in direction for the site following actions taken by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) earlier this month that restricted the site’s operations.

On Jan. 3, Polymarket settled with the CFTC for $1.4 million and was ordered to close certain markets. Polymarket said in response that it would close three markets.

The company says that it will now use a geoblocking policy so that U.S. residents will be able to view markets, but will not be able to trade. Trading will remain available to users outside of the United States.

In an email sent to Crypto Briefing and other publications, Polymarket said that these limitations will allow it to “provide individuals with an alternative source of information while working through the regulation process focusing on the future of the company.”

The timing of today’s announcement may be due to the fact that the CFTC’s order set Jan. 24 as a deadline for Polymarket to certify that it had restricted the relevant markets and redeemed user funds.

Polymarket Is Expanding Despite Limitations

It is unclear whether Polymarket will be able to reopen trading to U.S.-based users in the future.

However, the site continues to expand in other directions in the meantime. Polymarket says that it has added new markets in several areas, including cryptocurrency, NFTs, business, politics, and culture. Perhaps most notably, Polymarket has added a category that allows users to place bets on which crypto project will issue or “airdrop” a native token by the end of March.

The company raised $4 million in October 2020 to expand its features and offerings.

Disclosure: At the time of writing, the author of this piece owned BTC, ETH, and other cryptocurrencies.

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