LONDON (Reuters) – Barclays (BARC.L) is no longer providing banking services to major cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase, sources familiar with the matter told Reuters, ending a relationship that started in March last year as the exchange expanded in Europe.

FILE PHOTO: Workers are seen in at Barclays bank offices in the Canary Wharf financial district in London, Britain, November 17, 2017. REUTERS/Toby Melville

The rare deal between the San Francisco-based exchange and the British bank made it easier for Coinbase users to buy cryptocurrencies with pounds and withdraw their funds.

Barclays declined to comment, while Coinbase did not respond to repeated requests for comment. The news was first reported by industry website CoinDesk on Wednesday.

Large global banks have been reluctant to do business with companies that handle bitcoin and other digital coins because of concerns they are used by criminals to launder money and that regulators will soon crack down on them.

Three-quarters of cryptocurrency businesses in Britain are forced…

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Source: http://feeds.reuters.com/~r/reuters/technologyNews/~3/lhlmZWkucBM/barclays-ends-partnership-with-cryptocurrency-exchange-coinbase-sources-idUSKCN1V40ZV