Goldman Sachs continues to recognize the importance of Bitcoin. The bank’s CEO, David Solomon, today touched on the cryptocurrency—and central bank digital currencies (CBDCs)—in an earnings call.
“As activities in these areas [cryptocurrency, blockchain and the digitization of money] progress, there will be significant disruption and change in the way money moves around the world,” he said.
“There is also significant focus on cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, where the trajectory is less clear as market participants evaluate their possibility as a store of value,” he added.
The CEO’s comments echoed what he said earlier this month: that the bank’s clients are interested in Bitcoin but clearer regulation is needed in order for the corporation to act as a principal with crypto.
Goldman Sachs is keeping a close eye on digital assets. It plans to offer Bitcoin investment products to its wealth management clients, and it recently announced the reopening of its cryptocurrency trading desk.
But regulation in the US is slowing things down. “Of course we need to operate within the current regulatory guidelines,” Solomon continued. “For example, we cannot own Bitcoin or trade it as a principal.”
The CEO added that the bank will “play a role in these innovations as they are important to our clients and important to the future of global financial systems.”
Solomon also mentioned CBDCs. A CBDC is a centralized digital asset, controlled by a government or its central bank, that wants to improve how native fiat currencies, such as the US dollar or Japanese yen, function.
Countries are in different stages of producing a CBDC. China is already piloting a digital version of the yuan, but the US is still lagging behind; the Federal Reserve has said it is still not close to making a decision on releasing a CBDC.
Solomon acknowledged the importance of such technology, saying that central banks around the world were examining the CBDCs to work out the “longer term impact on global payment systems.”
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