US Bank launches service as institutions race to cater to crypto demand
Getty Images| Bloomberg | Getty Images
Institutional investors are increasingly interested in cryptocurrency betting.
U.S. BankCNBC reports that Fifth Avenue Bank, fifth largest retail bank, is set to announce Tuesday, CNBC reported, that the cryptocurrency custody service it offers to fund managers is now available.
Investment managers will be able to save private keys with this offering bitcoinBitcoin cash, litecoin and bitcoin cash with sub-custodian assistance NYDIGAccording to Gunjan KediaKedia, Vice Chair of the Bank’s Wealth Management and Investment Services Division. Kedia indicated that support for other coins, such as ethereum, is possible in time.
It is the latest signal that established financial actors are starting to accept cryptocurrency as an asset class. Custody banks are the ones that verify and protect trillions of dollars worth of assets to money managers. Major players include Bank of New York Mellon State StreetAnd Northern TrustAll of them have indicated plans to custodian digital assets.
Kedia explained that clients have become very interested in cryptocurrency’s potential as an asset class. I can’t imagine any asset manager not thinking about cryptocurrency right now.
Gunjan Kedia vice chairman of the bank’s Wealth Management and Investment Services Division.
Courtesy: US Bank
U.S. Bank is one of the top ten players in custody, with $8.6 trillion worth assets under administration and custody, as per data from Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.
A key regulator was released after a paperKedia conducted a survey of the largest clients in order to find out if they were interested after it was established last year that national banks can custody crypto assets. Kedia found that crypto interest was widespread and not restricted to niche players and clients wanted banks to act quickly.
“What we were hearing across the board, is that while every currency might not survive – there may not be room for thousands of coins— there’s something about the potential of this asset class and the underlying technology that would be prudent for us to stand up support for it,” she said.
She stated that while some investment clients are already holding bitcoins, others still await custody services to start. Kedia explained that U.S. Bank has the live custody product.
This year has seen a sharp rise in bitcoin’s price. surgingIt reached an all-time record of $64,000 in April, before falling to half its current value. However, the original cryptocurrency proved to be resilient. banLast month’s digital currency was worth $50,000, with a new high on Tuesday.
It is paradoxical that bitcoin was designed to remove financial middlemen. Yet, huge swathes the traditional financial order have been reconstructed to accommodate digital currencies. Fond managers can store their crypto keys. Kedia explained that fund managers would like the endorsement of U.S. Bank so they can allay client concerns.
U.S. Bank needs to track the source of funds for a client in order to be able to add a manager to the crypto product.
According to the bank the product is available only to institutional managers that have private funds located in the U.S. and Cayman islands. Demand is likely to increase if and when an ETF bitcoin from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is approved.
Kedia explained that ETFs are a popular investment option for many funds. Kedia said that some ETF investors want to have custody agreements signed as soon as the ETF is approved by the SEC.
You can become a better investor by becoming a smarter one CNBC Pro
Access to CNBC TV and stock picks as well as analyst calls. Exclusive interviews.
Register now to get started free trial today