Coinbase to Stop Trading on German Exchange Over Missed Code



(Bloomberg) — A German exchange said it will halt trading in Coinbase Global Inc. shares due to missing paperwork necessary to make the stock eligible on its platform.

Coinbase shares will cease trading on April 23, Deutsche Boerse said in a statement Wednesday. The company, which listed shares on Xetra and the Frankfurt Stock Exchange as part of its U.S. initial public offering, provided a code necessary for trading that wasn’t properly linked to the listed entity, Deutsche Boerse said, without providing further details.

“We’re aware of an administrative error that has made it necessary for Coinbase to resubmit certain documentation to certain European stock exchanges,” a company spokesperson said. “There have been no interruptions to trading of Coinbase stock at this time. We are working to resolve this as quickly as possible.”

The code, a Legal Entity Identifier, or LEI, is a 20-character unique reference — like a bar code — which allows assets to be recognized in trades and is used by regulators to oversee markets. It contains information about an entity’s ownership structure and have been a requirement for trading in European markets since January 2018. A company can obtain a code within a few days, according to the websites of various LEI providers.

“The only way to get Coinbase back into trading is for the issuer to apply for a LEI,” a spokesperson for Deutsche Boerse said.

The missing code on the German exchange doesn’t affect trading in the shares in the U.S. The cryptocurrency exchange started trading on the Nasdaq last Wednesday, with the company’s valuation surging above a $112 billion, before the shares started to fall back. The stock closed down 2.8% after falling as much as 5.8% earlier in the session.

“This is a small hiccup,” said Charlie Morris, a fund manager and founder of cryptocurrency price discovery site in London. “Most major U.S. companies have a German listing but volumes are light.”

(Adds closing stock price in sixth paragraph)

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