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Wall Street in Wait ‘n See Mode After Rocky 2018

Wall Street in Wait 'n See Mode After Rocky 2018

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2018 was the year of Wall Street’s suggestion that certain big names might be moving into cryptocurrency in one shape or form, but sentiments have cooled somewhat leading into 2019.

Goldman Sachs was one of these voices this year, with one exec saying he would “happily put his mother’s money into Bitcoin” However its much-publicized plans to open a crypto trading desk have been called “top-of-the-market-hype thinking” by Daniel H. Gallancy, chief executive officer of New York-based SolidX Partners, suggesting that the market’s expectation that Sachs and Co might trade was unrealistic.

Justin Schmidt, head of Goldman Sachs digital business suggested that the cooling off of some of the year’s over speculation was actually a good thing for the crypto ecosystem, as it allowed for companies that are actually providing institutional-grade products and services to come on board at the right time:

“Custody is part of an overall integrated system where different parts need to work well with each other and safely with each other and you have to be able to trust all the different parts in that chain, from buying something to transferring it to storing it in for the long-term.”

Wall Street has also been cooled somewhat by the usual less than realistic predictions which seem to have become de rigueur these days when talking about cryptocurrency, all of which have been well off the mark. Recent soundbites have made huge revisions to sky-high predictions of earlier in the year. Mike Novogratz, one of those earlier voices, has recently suggested that a much toned down $20,000 is a far more likely benchmark for Bitcoin in 2019, a figure which Sonny Singh, CCO of Bitcoin payment service provider Bitpay, agrees with.

Morgan Stanley, with its new head of digital assets Andrew Peel hasn’t actually traded a single contract this year despite it being technically prepared to offer swaps tracking Bitcoin futures one month after they began trading on Chicago-based exchanges CBOE and CME.

2019 looks to Nasdaq as the next entrée to a big players crypto feast.  Nasdaq is already supporting cryptocurrency exchanges and the company is certainly not new to cryptocurrency’s underlying technology, blockchain. Apart from its long-term relationship with blockchain startup, Chain, it has recently announced a collaboration with cryptocurrency exchange Gemini.

Joseph Weinburg, OECD Think Tank Special Advisor, and Shyft Chairman suggested that Nasdaq should definitely trade in Cryptocurrency:

“… this could be a great thing! Regulation, again, is a massive roadblock to something like this happening. You need to solve and create an informed model on self-regulation. By that, I mean how do you operate a bitcoin “marketplace” while at the same time enable a security token exchange… It’s not an easy process, but the entity that cracks it unlocks the holy grail in completing the bridge between traditional and the crypto ecosystem.”

Wall Street is not waiting with bated breath before it springs into crypto action; It is most definitely interested in the prospect, but certainly on hold until Bitcoin’s fortunes begin to stabilize in 2019.

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