Cryptocurrency Has Enormous Power to Transform Financial Services

Maheen Hernandez By Maheen Hernandez May 1, 2019 Off
financial services

The Depository Trust and Clearing Corporation maintain a master record for $48 trillion worth in stocks, bonds and other kinds of assets.  The corporation organized the “The Annual Fintech Symposium.”  Cryptocurrency took center stage in this symposium.

The symposium also highlighted several other hot technologies like cloud and artificial intelligence.  Two panels featured DTCC clients who focused on cryptocurrency and blockchain technology.

The DTCC is planning to launch its own blockchain technology.  The DLT from DTCC is designed to store $10 trillion worth of annual transactions.  The firm published a paper in the past month about how the securities issued on the blockchain gets managed. The event focused on what is actually to come and partly on what is possible.

Michael Bodson, DTCC CEO stated, “The potential of DLT is undeniable.”  While reading from prepared remarks, he mentioned, “But the question remains whether its enormous power to transform financial services will ever get fully harnessed. I have confidence in the technology, but our own experience with it reinforces that it’s going to take time and patience, and much more hard work and practice.”

Bodson compared the potential of blockchain technology to be one that can help modernize the global financial infrastructures.  He compared the technology to binge-watching “episodes of the technology hype cycle.”

Executives from Bakkt, Fidelity, and Northern Trust formed a panel.  The panel featured cryptocurrency and other crypto assets.

Kelly Leoffler, CEO at Bakkt, worked for 15 years at Intercontinental Exchange, an NYSE parent company.

Leoffler stated, “It is part of our hope that there’s institutional interest for crypto.”  Bakkt is building the institutional infrastructure for cryptocurrency trading and will be starting custody services later in the year.  The services will be focused on crypto futures and ultimately payments.

Leoffler highlighted on filing with the New York Department of Financial Services to become a qualified custodian.  Thus, acquiring a cryptocurrency custody company.

Starbucks, Coffee Giant, has been named as a launch partner by Leoffler to let the business accept cryptocurrency.  This nascent project will let businesses take cryptocurrency in exchange for goods and services, thereby providing for the assurance of working with a trusted provider.

Leoffler further stated, “They can get the benefits of crypto assets without being exposed to some of the risks.”

A poll was taken from the audience comprising of nearly 300 DTCC customers and a few others.  Only 23% of employers were planning to implement a business solution consisting of cryptocurrency payment solutions.  The obstacles to investing in cryptocurrency were related to 29% in regulatory uncertainty, 29% in valuation approach, and 21% in fraud.