Risk Off

July 5, 2023
Hand turning down a risk dial to minimum
Carson Cook, CEO

Crypto trading and lending desks navigate many risks, and managing these risks effectively is crucial for ensuring the stability and security of operations. These desks currently do not have an effective way to view, manage and mitigate risk. Membrane provides a comprehensive approach to managing the various risks unique to the space, enabling desks to navigate the crypto ecosystem confidently.


Chart with bitcoin trending up and down


Counterparty risk is a major concern for trading and lending desks, as it involves the potential failure of a counterparty to fulfill its obligations. These failures have unfortunately become commonplace in the industry, especially during the market collapse of 2022/2023. Membrane’s clearing infrastructure increases transparency for all sides of a transaction, reducing blindspots and potential exposure to default risk. By providing a standardized framework for netting and settlement, Membrane minimizes the impact of counterparty failures and provides more secure and efficient transactions.

The centralized nature of many crypto exchanges and platforms poses inherent risks, including vulnerability to cyber attacks, manipulation, and single points of failure. Membrane addresses this centralization risk by establishing a network that interconnects crypto exchanges, custodians, wallets, and trading desks. This distributed infrastructure promotes resilience and security, reducing dependence on a single entity.


Padlock with data visuals swirling around it

Settlement risk, which arises from delays, failures, and errors in the settlement process, can disrupt operations and result in financial losses. Membrane streamlines the settlement process and reduces settlement risk. Membrane enables timely and accurate transaction settlements, reducing potential discrepancies or disputes.

Regulatory uncertainty and evolving compliance requirements present challenges for trading and lending desks. Non-compliance can lead to legal and reputational consequences. Recognizing the importance of regulatory compliance, Membrane actively supports robust KYC and AML measures, and requires that all parties know each other and have already conducted their own KYC.

Market risk is an inherent part of crypto trading and lending, as adverse price movements and market volatility can significantly impact profitability and stability. Membrane’s integrated network and transparent communication provide real-time access to market data and LTV tracking of loan positions for both lenders and borrowers. This empowers desks to make informed decisions and implement risk management strategies, mitigating market risk effectively.

Liquidity risk is another concern for trading and lending desks, particularly during periods of market stress or volatility. Insufficient liquidity can hinder trading activities and limit the ability to meet lending obligations. Membrane’s interconnected network can facilitate access to a broader pool of OTC counterparties beyond exchanges, enhancing liquidity profiles for desks.

In the dynamic and rapidly evolving world of crypto trading and lending, effectively managing risk is vital for long-term success and stability. Membrane’s innovative netting and settlement infrastructure addresses various risks, including counterparty risk, centralization risk, settlement risk, regulatory risk, market risk, and liquidity risk. By providing an integrated network, standardized settlement processes and regulatory compliance support, Membrane empowers trading and lending desks to navigate the complexities of the crypto industry with confidence.

NOTICE: This article is intended for general information, educational and discussion purposes only. It is not an offer, inducement or solicitation of any kind, and is not to be relied upon as constituting legal, financial, investment, tax or other professional advice.  A professional advisor should be consulted for your specific situation. Digital assets are highly volatile and risky, are not legal tender, and are not backed by the government. This article may contain views or opinions of the author that do not necessarily reflect the opinions, standards or policies of Membrane. We expressly disclaim all liability and all warranties of accuracy, completeness, merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose with respect to this article.

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