Barclays, the second-largest Bank by assets in the UK, is considering providing its customers to work with cryptocurrencies.
Bloomberg reports that Barclays is in the process of assessing how this service will be popular among its customers.
A source close to the Bank’s management reported that currently the Bank does not have any specific plans, but added that most of the major banks will study this issue in the near future. Barclays, in particular, is considering whether to make the future a service available to all customers including institutions and hedge funds or something to limit it.
Barclays spokesman Andrew Smith commented on this matter for the cryptocurrency publication CoinDesk:
Currently, Barclays has no plans to create trading platform for cryptocurrencies. We constantly monitor developments in the digital currency space and will continue the dialogue with our clients regarding their requirements and intentions in this market in the future.”
Other major banks also consider the possibility to launch similar services for their clients, primarily Goldman Sachs, which became the subject of speculation back in December. However, a few weeks later CEO Lloyd Blankfein has denied this rumor. In January he said that does not rule out launching cryptocurrency platform for customers in the future.
Hedge funds are increasingly interested in cryptocurrency trading, so the potential customer base for the investment Bank is only growing.
According to Autonomous Research, currently the market has about 245 funds focused primarily on cryptocurrencies. Despite the serious fall in the price of the cryptocurrency, only about 9 of these funds were closed in 2018.