Frankfurt-based stock exchange Deutsche Börse AG, the ninth-largest stock exchange in the world by market cap, is considering trading cryptocurrency-related products.
Speaking at an event organized by the Association for Financial Markets in Europe, Jeffrey Tessler, the head of clients, products and core markets at Deutsche Boerse, said that before making any decision on Bitcoin “we want to understand the volatility and make sure clients are in line and make sure regulators are in line,” reports Bloomberg.
The road to an influx of institutional money into the cryptocurrency market has been rocky, marred by fake ICOs, regulatory conflicts and challenges, and price manipulation due to the introduction of Bitcoin futures trading.
Bitcoin derivatives, first offered by US rivals Cboe Global Markets Inc. and CME Group Inc., started in mid-December of last year. The run-up to the derivatives launch triggered a huge spike in Bitcoin’s price when it soared to nearly $20,000. Bitcoin is now trading around $7,500.
Goldman Sachs, which refrained from offering Bitcoin futures last year, recently announced that it will open a cryptocurrency trading desk in addition to working closely with its investment Circle, a payment platform startup that is offering several blockchain-based solutions, including a “crypto dollar” to transform the financial industry through the adoption of cryptocurrencies.
Meanwhile Deutsche Bank, Germany’s biggest lender and world’s 16th largest bank, is preparing to slash 10% of its workforce, eliminating nearly 10,000 jobs, in the wake of its abysmal earnings report, the worst of any major global bank.
Deutsche Boerse also reported declining first-quarter net profits that were lower than analysts’ expectations, down 11% from Q1 2017.
As leading banks and financial institutions post smaller net profits, they’re looking to expand into other businesses, streamline protocols and procedures, and explore technologies that have the potential to increase earnings, including AI, machine learning, blockchain, cryptocurrencies and digital assets.