After getting numerous requests from customers, Citigroup is looking into the rollout of services to support cryptocurrency, Financial Times (FT) reported on Friday (May 7).
The world’s third-largest banking institution, Citigroup is considering launching crypto trading, custody, and financing services. Since August 2020, Citigroup said it has seen a surge in interest by some of its biggest clients.
“There are different options from our perspective, and we are considering where we can best service clients. This is not going to be a prop-trading effort,” Itay Tuchman, Citi’s global head of foreign exchange, told FT.
The mounting interest in bitcoin came from a wide array of clients and asset managers, some wanting research, and others looking to trade a variety of crypto through the bank. Clients also asked about financing deals with cryptocurrency holdings, per FT.
“We shouldn’t do anything that’s not safe and sound. We will jump in when we are confident that we can build something that benefits clients and that regulators can support,” Tuchman added, per FT.
Tuchman also added there is no timeline for Citi to make a concrete decision and execute a plan for the crypto market.
There is a dose of skepticism among crypto trading insiders that mainstream financial institutions don’t have the capacity to compete against specialists who have been spent years trading in the space.
Shahmir Khaliq, global head of Treasury and Trade Solutions for Citi, says that in order to succeed in today’s quickly digitizing payments landscape, merchants must focus on delivering in three key areas: choice, convenience, and speed. Find out why in The Connected Economy’s Power Source – CEO Edition.
As cryptocurrencies edge closer to acceptance among the mainstream population, Keith Johnson, general manager of Ternio, said in a PYMNTS interview that cryptocurrency, aside from bitcoin, could change how people make purchases.
The cryptocurrency or token economy is apart from bitcoin and blockchain. Cryptocurrency assets now include newcomers like non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and altcoins such as Dogecoin. Blockchain is not bitcoin — nor is it Dogecoin, NFT or the token economy.
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