Users of WEX, the cryptocurrency exchange built on the ashes of BTC-e, are reporting withdrawal problems, raising new questions about an already mysterious trading platform.
“Dear Wex, when withdraws will enable ??” asked Twitter user Alireza Moosavi on Friday, joining a crowd of Wex customers complaining they couldn’t withdraw funds for the second day in a row.
Ehsan Mahmoodi similarly inquired, “Hello, why withdrawal is disabled?”
A third user, Hasan Gusseynov, asked the exchange, in Russian, “When will everything be ok?”
The user complaints follow odd trading activity observed on the exchange. Earlier this week, CoinDesk reported that the price of bitcoin (against the U.S. dollar) shot up to nearly $9,000 on WEX, while it was still in the $6,000 range practically everywhere else.
Observers say the anomaly could have been due to a number of reasons, from recently-raised fiat withdrawal fees on the exchange to suspicions of insolvency. As of this writing, the USD price of bitcoin on WEX was $7,451, more than $1,200 higher than the price recorded on CoinDesk’s Bitcoin Price Index (BPI).
Stepping back, WEX was launched last year in an apparent effort to resurrect BTC-e, a long-running bitcoin exchange that was targeted and eventually shut down by U.S. and Greek law enforcement officials. A Russian national named Alexander Vinnik was arrested and charged with laundering billions of dollars on BTC-e, and U.S. regulators hit the exchange with a $110 million fine.
Although WEX claimed to be unrelated to BTC-e, its website design and trading pairs were very similar and it was pitched as a service for former BTC-e customers.
Questions aside, posts on social media as well as WEX’s chatbox indicate that the withdrawal problems…