The era of US banks looking down upon the cryptocurrency space might be coming to an end. According to a report by CNBC, New Digital Investment Group (NYDIG), a digital currency investment management firm, has signed an agreement with FinTech heavyweight Fidelity National Information Services (FIS) to offer a platform for US banks to offer crypto trading services to their customers. It’s possible that, before the end of the year, Bank of America and others might be ready to launch cryptocurrency trading.
Patrick Sells, NYDIG’s bank solutions head, told CNBC that several banks have already been onboarded to the new program. While he acknowledges that most of these are smaller financial institutions, he adds that the company is discussing options with major banks in the
US to participate, as well. According to Sells, Bank of America (BoA) and JPMorgan, two major financial institutions that previously shied away from crypto, could possibly become interested in providing crypto trading solutions after witnessing how the smaller, independent banks attract attention. BoA has long been opposed to digital currency and has regularly disputed the value of Bitcoin (BTC) and digital currencies. However, as witnessed by the entrance of Visa, PayPal and others, BoA could be forced to change its position once it sees that other financial companies are making money from crypto trading.
Sells explains, “What we’re doing is making it simple for everyday Americans and corporations to be able to buy [BTC] 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 [BTC].”
The partnership between NYDIG and FIS includes the ability for participating banks to offer crypto trading for their customers through the customers’ existing accounts. Banks that take advantage of the service and launch trading could see financial institutions competing with platforms like Robinhood, Coinbase and Square, as well as others, that have been involved in the activity for the past couple of years.
Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley recently announced plans to introduce BTC funds to their institutional clients, an indication that the tide is already shifting and more attention is being given the retail crypto space. Morgan Stanley began offering BTC funds in March, with Goldman Sachs following quickly behind.