Crypto exchanges Gemini and Coinbase become the first crypto clients of the major investment bank JPMorgan Chase, the Wall Street Journal reported today, citing undisclosed people familiar with the matter. (Updated at 13:20 UTC: updates throughout the entire text).
Coinbase and Gemini’s account were approved in April, while transactions are starting to be processed, the report added.
JPMorgan and Gemini declined to comment when contacted by Cryptonews.com. We have also contacted Coinbase for comment, and will update the article should they reply.
If the report is correct, it comes as another sign that the traditional finance world looks for ways to enter the crypto industry. Yesterday, legendary hedge fund manager Paul Tudor Jones confirmed that up to 2% of his assets are in bitcoin (BTC).
@gaborgurbacs They need the money
— Jamo (@jamo2221)
@novogratz My cynical half thinks JPM is doing this to position its IB for Coinbase’s and Gemini’s IPO in the not t… https://t.co/s0odUHbQ4n
— SpartanBlack (@SpartanBlack_1)
The bank has come a long way. There’s a well-remembered statement from 2017 by Chairman and CEO of JPMorgan Chase, Jamie Dimon, that Bitcoin is a fraud, and that he’d terminate any BTC trader for being “stupid,” later adding that BTC will “blow up.” Still, he later backtracked somewhat, claiming to regret this statement, though admitting he’s not a crypto fan. In February 2018, per a leaked report the bank described cryptocurrencies as “the face of blockchain,” which “are here to stay,” while a note to investors claimed that Bitcoin was unequipped to handle a liquidity crisis. Once the JPM Coin was announced a year after that, Umar Farooq, head of Digital Treasury Services and Blockchain at the bank, argued that the bank always believed in blockchain’s potential, and that it supports crypto if it’s “properly controlled and regulated.“
Also, as reported recently, the JPMorgan Perspectives report found that people are ready to embrace so-called “private money,” meaning any type of currency issued by a private institution, such as Facebook’s Libra.
JPMorgan Chase is ranked by S&P Global as the largest bank in the United States and the sixth-largest bank in the world by total assets, with total assets of USD 2.687 trillion.