PayPal, the global payment giant, has been served with a subpoena by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) related to its U.S. dollar-pegged stablecoin, PayPal USD (PYUSD). The subpoena, received on November 1, has led to PayPal being requested to provide specific documents to the SEC’s Enforcement division.
In its Q3 financial report with the SEC, PayPal officially disclosed the action and confirmed its cooperation with the SEC regarding the request.
This development comes approximately three months after PayPal launched the PYUSD stablecoin in August. PYUSD is issued by Paxos Trust, backed by U.S. dollar deposits, short-term Treasurys, and similar cash equivalents. Operating on the Ethereum blockchain, PYUSD aims to facilitate digital payments and activities in the Web3 space.
Since its launch, PYUSD has seen a successful rollout, gaining a $150 million market capitalization within two months. As of the current moment, the stablecoin has a market cap of approximately $159 million and boasts nearly $2.7 million in daily trading volume.
The rapid adoption of PYUSD was further fueled by prominent exchanges like Coinbase, Crypto.com, Bitstamp, and Kraken listing the stablecoin on their platforms shortly after its introduction. In addition, PayPal revealed plans to integrate PYUSD into the Venmo mobile payment service, enabling users to purchase the stablecoin and send it to friends and family.
PayPal’s expansion into the crypto sector has not been limited to the United States. In October, the United Kingdom Financial Conduct Authority granted PayPal a license to offer crypto services in the UK, reflecting the company’s broader crypto initiatives worldwide.
The recent SEC action against PayPal serves as another example of the challenges crypto companies face within the regulatory environment of the United States. The SEC has initiated legal proceedings against numerous major domestic crypto firms, including the ongoing lawsuit against Coinbase. In October 2023, the SEC moved to dismiss its three-year lawsuit against Ripple, the firm behind the XRP token, one of the largest cryptocurrencies by market capitalization. In April 2023, Circle CEO Jeremy Allaire attributed a decrease in the market capitalization of the USD Coin (USDC) stablecoin to regulatory actions taken against cryptocurrencies by U.S. authorities.