The latest report from Bloomberg suggests that Wall Street financial giant Fidelity Investments is starting its crypto trading service in a few weeks. Fidelity’s crypto trading service will initially focus on Bitcoin and available only to institutional players.
Fidelity is one of the biggest asset managers in the financial sector. It made a foray in the crypto space by announcing its new subsidiary Fidelity Digital Assets, last year in October 2018. At that time, the company unveiled its institutional-grade crypto storage solution. The custody storage services went live this year in March 2019.
Now that the company plans to soon launch its trading service, Fidelity spokesperson Arlene Roberts said:
“We currently have a select set of clients we’re supporting on our platform. We will continue to roll out our services over the coming weeks and months based on our clients’ needs, jurisdictions, and other factors. Currently, our service offering is focused on Bitcoin.”
Earlier in February 2019, Fidelity said that its crypto trading service is in the final testing phase. Simultaneously, the company also outlines the plans for risks and compliance saying that it’s fully committed to offering safe bitcoin storage.
Fidelity Taking the Leading Edge
In the last few months, we have seen some of the big players from the traditional financial space warming up to the crypto market. However, Fidelity seeks to take the first-mover-advantage over its other Wall Street peers. A lot of big organization are waiting on the sidelines for institutional participation in Bitcoin.
Last week, Fidelity published a research report stating that institutional participation is on the rise. Some of the key report findings include:
- nearly half of respondents (47%) appreciate that digital assets are an innovative technology play
- 46% find digital assets’ low correlation to other assets among the most appealing characteristic
- Financial advisors (74%) and family offices (80%) view the characteristics of digital assets most favorably
The report findings consist of the survey done across 450 financial institutions. This includes hedge funds, family offices, as well as registered financial institutions. The survey notes that nearly 20 percent of these institutions pledge their investments to digital assets.
The survey clearly hints towards major crypto penetration in the mainstream financial market. At the same time, issues like fraud, theft and regulatory uncertainty continue to create major roadblocks in the mainstream crypto adoption.
Note that Fidelity is not the only financial giant, trying to bring institutional-grade crypto products. ICE’s Bakkt platform is working on a similar vision to bring cryptocurrencies to the mainstream. Besides encouraging institutional participation, ICE’s Bakkt wants to bring cryptocurrencies to daily retail spendings. The platform has already partnered with some of the big players like Starbucks to give a push to its plans.
In February 2019, Morgan Creek Digital launched first-of-its-kind crypto pension fund backed by two public pensions.