Shaurya Malwa · 4 days ago · 2 min read
U.S. › Banking
Bitcoin (BTC) is reportedly coming to ‘hundreds’ of U.S. banks in 2021
The world’s largest cryptocurrency is valued at $1 trillion. But institutional adoption could just be starting.
Hundreds of U.S. banks will soon allow customers to buy, hold and sell #bitcoin through their existing accounts, says NYDIG.
— Documenting Bitcoin 🟩 (@DocumentingBTC) May 5, 2021
The company is a subsidiary of $10 billion New York-based asset manager Stone Ridge. It has partnered with fintech giant Fidelity National Information Services to enable U.S. banks to offer Bitcoin.
As per Patrick Sells, head of banking at NYDIG, ‘hundreds’ of banks are already onboard with their Bitcoin plans and wish to soon offer clients the means to buy, sell, invest, and trade the world’s largest crypto asset by market cap.
“What we’re doing is making it simple for everyday Americans and corporations to be able to buy bitcoin through their existing bank relationships. If I’m using my mobile application to do all of my banking, now I have the ability to buy, sell and hold Bitcoin,” Sells said.
The firm is said to be in discussions with some of the biggest U.S. banks, but small lenders like Suncrest, a California-based community bank with seven branches, are participating in the program as well.
But why do it?
As per Yan Zhao, president of NYDIG, banks and financial institutions are overseeing millions of dollars being sent to crypto exchanges like Coinbase, Kraken, and others daily. It’s a piece of the pie they have forgone thus far, but not anymore.
“This is not just the banks thinking that their clients want Bitcoin, they’re saying `We need to do this, because we see the data,'” shared Zhao, adding, “They’re seeing deposits going to the Coinbases and Galaxies and Krakens of the world.”
“Most people can’t invest in things that institutional investors get to invest in. With Bitcoin available through your bank to be purchased with as little as $1, now you have an attractive asset that’s available to be owned by anyone in any amount. We think that’s huge for economic empowerment,” she further explained on the demand for Bitcoin services from retail audiences.
Rob Lee, head of digital banking at Fidelity National Information, said that hundreds of small U.S. banks could force bigwigs like JPMorgan Chase, Goldman Sachs, and others to offer crypto services to their clients.
Such banks have, so far, reluctantly offered Bitcoin trading services for wealthy clients, but none for the everyday individual investor. But could that soon change?
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