FedWire Is Back Online After Outage That Affected Crypto Exchanges, Others

The outage only lasted a few hours and affected wire transfers that were in the process of being settled or were in the queue.

AccessTimeIconFeb 24, 2021 at 8:43 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 14, 2021 at 12:16 p.m. UTC

The U.S. Federal Reserve has restored access to its real-time settlement system for central bank money. 

The outage affected wire transfers that were in the process of being settled or already in the queue. During the outage, cryptocurrency exchanges including Gemini, Kraken and Coinbase were seeing delays in some transactions. Those problems should now be resolved.

“The Fedwire Funds Service, Fedwire Securities Service, and National Settlement Service have resumed processing and are operating normally,” the central bank wrote in an updated note. “The Federal Reserve Banks have taken steps to help ensure the resilience of the Fedwire and NSS applications, including recovery to the point of failure.”

This kind of failure is very rare for bankers to experience.

“Maybe it's happened to us twice in 11 years,” Steve Schnall, CEO of Manhattan-based Quontic Bank said. 

For Quontic, a separate banker's bank with direct access to the Fed was able to handle its wires during the downtime, Schnall said. 

“I’m not sure if many or all have such a relationship,” Schnall said. “The bigger banks wouldn’t need [a correspondent bank] as they typically have direct access to the Fed.”


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