Goldman Sachs downgrades Coinbase shares to “sell”

The shares of Coinbase have been facing a massive decline during the past 24 hours. The exchange shares have dropped by double digits to trade at $54.88 at the time of writing.

The dip in COIN comes after Goldman Sachs lowered the exchange’s shares from “neutral” to “sell.” Goldman Sachs lowered COIN’s price target from $70 to $45. The recent analysis by Goldman Sachs comes amid increased volatility in the crypto space. This volatility has affected Coinbase, which said it would lay off 18% of its staff.

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Goldman Sachs predicts dip in Coinbase shares

In a note to investors, analyst Will Nance said that the exchange needed to adopt more cost-cutting measures. This shows that the recently announced layoffs and the hiring freeze have had no notable impact.

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Nance also predicted that Coinbase’s year-over-year revenues would decline by over 60%, adding, “We believe current crypto asset levels and trading volumes imply further degradation in COIN’s revenue base.”

Before the recent change, Goldman Sachs had labeled COIN shares as having a “neutral” status. Neutral means that the shares were neither a “buy” nor a “sell.” However, the recent change of status to “sell” shows that the COIN shares would most likely depreciate in the future, with the institution advising its investors to sell.

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Coinbase is the largest cryptocurrency exchange in the US. The company underwent a direct listing on NASDAQ early last year. Coinbase shares have mainly attracted investors that do not want direct exposure to cryptocurrency prices.

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The company’s shares tend to fluctuate according to the performance of the broader cryptocurrency market. When COIN shares first started trading on NASDAQ, they debuted with a price of $381.

Plunge in Coinbase’s revenues

The ongoing decline in the prices of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin has affected trading volumes on the exchange. Cryptocurrency exchanges derive revenues from charging commissions on crypto trades.

The recent change of COIN shares to the “sell” status by Goldman Sachs comes shortly after ratings agency Moody’s downgraded the company’s corporate debt. The company further added that Coinbase had weak revenues and cash generation models.

“Today’s rating action reflects Coinbase’s sustainability weaker revenue and cash flow generation due to the steep declines in crypto asset prices that have occurred in recent months and reduced customer trading activity,” Moody’s said.

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