Brazil’s Largest Bank Opens Bitcoin Trading For all Users

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Itau Unibanco, the largest bank in Brazil, has expanded its cryptocurrency trading services to all users. According to the announcement, this significant development enables customers to purchase Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH) through Ion, the bank’s in-house investment platform. 

All Users can now Trade Bitcoin and Ethereum

Previously, this feature was only available to selected users, marking a major step forward in cryptocurrency adoption in Brazil. Itau Unibanco’s decision to open cryptocurrency trading to all its customers reflects the growing demand for digital assets in the financial market. The Bank has started considering other cryptocurrencies. 

The bank’s initiative is part of a broader trend among traditional financial institutions recognizing the potential of cryptocurrencies. By offering direct access to crypto trading, Itau Unibanco is positioning itself at the forefront of this emerging market. This strategic move will enhance customer retention and attract new clients keen on exploring digital assets.

Likewise, this move is expected to attract a broad range of investors, from seasoned traders to those new to the cryptocurrency market. The bank has also implemented rigorous measures to ensure the safety of its users’ transactions and assets. 

Brazil is the Largest Market in LATAM

In the first months of 2024, Brazil witnessed a significant surge in crypto trading volumes, according to data from Kaiko’s Research. The country’s crypto trading activity experienced a notable increase of 30% year-over-year. Between January and early May 2024, the trading volume denominated in Brazilian real (BRL) reached a staggering $6 billion, marking a significant rise from the previous year.

Interestingly, this surge has positioned Brazil as the largest market in Latin America and the seventh-largest worldwide in fiat currency trade. Despite recent market corrections, BRL trade volumes have steadily increased, outpacing United States dollar trade volumes since late January. Also, the report highlights the growing popularity of stablecoins over Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in Brazil, with nearly half of all trades in 2024 involving stablecoins.

Mastercard to Foster Crypto Trading for Banks

In 2022, Financial technology and payment firm Mastercard introduced a program dubbed Crypto Source to help financial institutions offer secure crypto trading services to their clients. The introduced offering will help Mastercard extend additional security to players in the crypto industry and support card issuers as they comply with complex regulations. 

In the long run, Mastercard’s crypto trading offerings to banks and fintech firms will include technology and partnership support for buying, holding, and selling digital assets. Likewise, Mastercard will offer security management including identity solutions, crypto analytics, anti-money laundering, and Know Your Business, amongst many others.

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