The same day the Federal Reserve announced its FedNow instant payment service was live, Custodia Bank CEO Caitlin Long spotted what she calls an ‘interesting’ find in the list of early adopters.

The Federal Reserve launched its FedNow instant payment service, which allows for real-time, always-on money transfers throughout its interbank system, on Thursday.

But Long called attention to the fact that Federal Reserve records show Adyen, one of the 35 banks and credit unions with access to the new service, appears to have received its federal master account in July 2020—a year before the Amsterdam-based company was approved to establish a branch in the U.S..


“How does a fintech even have a Fed master account so it can qualify to clear US$ payments at the Fed–isn't the Fed keeping fintechs out," Long asked in a thread on Twitter.

Long has been locked in her own battle to secure a federal master account for her crypto bank, Custodia. The master account would provide Custodia access to the FedWire network, which handled approximately 200 million transfers amounting to over $1 quadrillion in 2022. But the rules around which institutions qualify for access to the network have been murky, according to Long.

Now she's saying they're made murkier by the fact that the Amsterdam company doesn’t call itself a bank in its own press release.

“The Fed isn’t complying with the law,” she added in another tweet, claiming that the inclusion of the European private company fails to fulfill the Federal Reserve’s requirements to become a payment provider in the U.S..

Her cause for concern stems from the fact Custodia has repeatedly been rejected from gaining master accounts, which she calls not only unlawful but “un-American.”


The Federal Reserve did not immediately reply to a request for comment from Decrypt. 

The fervent conflict regarding the digital asset industry goes beyond Long and Custodia, and involves a number of banks and companies associated with the industry who collapsed in the past year. The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has also begun an all-encompassing tirade against a plethora of crypto projects.

Long concluded that “U.S. fintechs must be livid.”

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