Goldman Sachs’s efforts to assist hedge funds and other big institutional clients wager on bitcoin have progressed. Recently, the bank has begun trading bitcoin futures alongside Galaxy Digital, the crypto investment firm.
The move suggests that clients of one of the world’s leading investment banks, Goldman Sachs, will soon have access to a new asset class that has piqued the interest of billionaires and digital currency enthusiasts alike as reported by CNBC.
According to Damien Vanderwilt, co-president of Galaxy and head of its global markets business, the trades are the first time Goldman has utilized digital assets firm as a counterparty since the investment bank established its cryptocurrency desk last month.
Goldman’s efforts may have repercussions on Wall Street and beyond, as banks face increased pressure from clients who seek exposure to bitcoin. By becoming the first big U.S. bank to begin trading cryptocurrencies, Goldman Sachs effectively gives other institutions clearance to do the same.
Galaxy will act as Goldman’s “liquidity provider,” which is a Wall Street term for a business that offers quotations for buy and sell orders on CME Group bitcoin futures. Since the highly regulated banking industry can’t handle bitcoin directly, Goldman is relying on Galaxy for access to the crypto realm. Max Minton, head of digital assets for Goldman’s Asia-Pacific region, stated:
Our goal is to equip our clients with best-execution pricing and secure access to the assets they want to trade, in 2021, this now includes crypto, and we are pleased to have found a partner with a broad range of liquidity venues and differentiated derivatives capabilities spanning the cryptocurrency ecosystem.
Banks will be able to offer clients ways to wager on bitcoin using derivatives. This comprises arbitrage bets related to the price gap between CME bitcoin futures and bitcoin itself, relative value trades between bitcoin and Ethereum, and the creation of bitcoin structured notes.
Arguing about choosing between Gold and Cryptocurrency, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. says the two can coexist. Recently SkyBridge adopted Goldman’s viewpoint and prides itself on its diversity.
“There’s a whole dynamic with the major banks that I’ve seen time and time again: safety in numbers,” Vanderwilt said this week in an interview. “Once one bank is out there doing this, the other banks will have [fear of missing out] and they’ll get on-boarded because their clients have been asking for it.”
Galaxy, whose management team includes ex-Goldman Sachs executives with experience running regulated firms, positions itself as a link between financial institutions and crypto exchanges. The company, whose stock is traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange, is expected to issue shares in the United States this year.
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