In a report published September 13, Bloomberg cited anonymous sources, revealing that Morgan Stanley was planning to offer Bitcoin trade swaps.
The sources told Bloomberg that the US bank planned on following in the footsteps of other firms pursuing Bitcoin and cryptocurrency exposure options.
Morgan Stanley, Wall Street, And Bitcoin
Morgan Stanley is already technically prepared to offer Bitcoin swap trading, with the bank launching the service once there is a proven institutional demand, and after completing an internal approval process, one source explains. Morgan Stanley declined to comment on the news.
Some of the largest banks on Wall Street are moving forward with plans to offer derivatives tied to digital assets, despite the downturn the cryptocurrency market is currently experiencing. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Citigroup Inc. are both preparing investment products tied to Bitcoin as well.
Morgan Stanley will not be trading in Bitcoin directly, with its swaps tied to Bitcoin futures contracts, the source said. The bank’s CEO, James Gorman, had stated earlier this year that the bank would not allow customers to buy and sell cryptocurrencies directly through Morgan Stanley, but instead would create a trading desk to help support derivatives tied to cryptocurrencies.
The bank has already made moves to prepare for Bitcoin trading, hiring Andrew Peel as their head of digital asset markets from Credit Suisse Group AG in June of 2018. Peel, who is based in Zurich, Switzerland, will report to Niall Dowling, the global head of equities trading of Morgan Stanley.
Meanwhile, Citigroup is developing a system for trading cryptocurrencies known as digital asset receipts, and Goldman Sachs is looking into Bitcoin derivatives called non-deliverable forwards. Goldman Sachs is also reportedly considering offering custodial services for cryptocurrency funds.
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