Standard Chartered to Establish Bitcoin and Ethereum Trading Desk

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Standard Chartered, one of the world’s leading international banks, has announced plans to launch a cryptocurrency trading desk, targeting Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH). According to a Bloomberg report, this strategic move signifies the bank’s commitment to integrating digital assets into its portfolio and responding to the growing demand for cryptocurrency investment from institutional clients.

Standard Chartered Adopt Digital Asset Trading

Standard Chartered’s decision comes amid a global surge in cryptocurrency adoption, with Bitcoin and Ethereum leading the market. By setting up a trading desk for these digital assets. Standard Chartered became one of the first global banks to adopt a crypto strategy through spot digital asset trading. The debut of the trading desk will be launched soon and will be supported under the bank’s foreign exchange trading unit. 

Other major banks and financial firms have also begun exploring cryptocurrency trading and investment opportunities, driven by increasing client interest and the potential for significant returns.

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Meanwhile, the successful debut of spot crypto exchange-traded Funds (ETFs) underscores growing investor interest in cryptocurrencies. Early this month, Coinbase Exchange launched a new smart wallet designed to tackle key challenges in the cryptocurrency trading ecosystem, making it easier for new users to get started and reducing transaction costs.

Companies See Massive Potential in the Crypto Industry

Beyond Standard Chartered, Itau Unibanco, the largest bank in Brazil has announced cryptocurrency trading expansion services to all its users. The significant development enables customers to purchase Bitcoin and Ethereum through Ion, the bank’s in-house investment platform.

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. Also, the move will enhance customer retention and attract new clients keen on exploring digital assets.

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Meanwhile, 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. 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.

Standard Chartered Year-End Target Still Remains

Despite the potential for a price decline, the long-term outlook for Bitcoin remains a subject of debate. Recall that Standard Chartered Bank revised its Bitcoin price prediction target in March, raising it to $150,000 by the end of 2024, up from its previous estimate of between $100,000 and $120,000.

The decision to increase the target arises due to the ongoing robust inflows into newly launched spot Bitcoin Exchange Traded Funds in the United States, alongside the favorable price momentum of Bitcoin. The bank continues to uphold its Bitcoin price projection of $200,000 by the end of 2025.

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