As more and more large banks begin to provide encryption services, HSBC has confirmed its position on Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies. CEO Noel Quinn said that HSBC treats Bitcoin as an asset class, not a payment tool, but the bank is not in a hurry to provide customers with cryptocurrency investments.
HSBC confirms crypto position
According to a Reuters report on Monday, HSBC CEO Noel Quinn stated that the bank “has no plans to open a cryptocurrency trading desk” or provide customers with cryptocurrency as investment.
To quote Quinn: “In view of the volatility, we don’t treat Bitcoin as an asset class. If our customers want to join Bitcoin, they will certainly exist, but we will not be in our wealth management business. Promote it as an asset class…For similar reasons, we will not rush to buy stablecoins.”
The HSBC executive explained that he is skeptical of cryptocurrencies, partly because of the difficulty of assessing the transparency of who owns the cryptocurrency and the difficulty of converting it into fiat currency immediately. Quinn further shared:
I think Bitcoin is more of an asset class than a payment tool, because it is so volatile, so there is a very difficult question of how to evaluate its value on the customer’s balance sheet.
He continued: “Then you will get stablecoins to support the reserves to solve the storage value problem, but it depends on who the initiator is, plus the structure and accessibility of the reserves.”
The HSBC CEO’s clarification on cryptocurrency was at the same time that China prohibited financial institutions from providing services related to cryptocurrency transactions, and at the same time reiterated the crackdown on cryptocurrencies announced in 2017. China is the key to HSBC’s growth strategy.
HSBC is not friendly to Bitcoin or any cryptocurrency. In April, the bank changed its policy to prohibit customers from buying shares in companies that hold Bitcoins such as Microstrategy.
At the same time, other major banks are or plan to launch crypto services, including Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, UBS, DBS Bank and Citigroup.
What do you think of HSBC’s position on Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies? Let us know in the comments section below.
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