- Galaxy Digital CEO hints at his company working with Fidelity as it introduces Bitcoin trading services for individuals.
- According to him, the recent entry of Blackrock into the crypto space “was a monumental” thing that would see more traditional investment firms join the space.
Fidelity Investments is reportedly considering launching Bitcoin trading services for individual investors on its brokerage platform, a Monday report by The Wallstreet Journal revealed.
Although the firm is yet to confirm the report, reliable sources who declined to be named revealed the said plans. Those assertions were further buttressed by Mike Novogratz, CEO of Galaxy Digital who hinted on Monday that Fidelity was planning on joining his firm.
“A bird told me that Fidelity, a little bird in my ear, is going to shift their retail customers into crypto soon enough,” Mr Novogratz was quoted saying at the SALT Conference on Monday. “I hope that bird is right. And so we are seeing this institutional march.”
According to him, the recent entry of Blackrock into the crypto space “was a monumental” thing that would see more traditional investment firms throng into the ecosystem.
Since it launched a Bitcoin trading product for institutional investors and hedge funds in 2018, Fidelity has been focused on plans to avail more crypto services to its over 43 million customers. The firm was however constricted to offering only certain crypto-related packages due to garden walled nature of U.S. financial regulations. In 2020 the firm launched its first crypto fund targeted at its wealthy customers. Earlier this year, the firm rolled out a 401(k) product that allows employees or users to include Bitcoin in their retirement plan onboarding Microstrategy.
That said, according to experts Fidelity’s move of potentially allowing brokerage customers to hold crypto in their accounts is likely to draw scrutiny from regulators. In July, three US senators condemned Fidelity’s 401(k) product terming the move to introduce it as “immensely troubling”.
“It seems ill-advised for one of the leading names in the world of finance to endorse the use of such a volatile, illiquid, and speculative asset in 401(k) plans—which are supposed to be retirement savings vehicles defined by consistent contributions and steady returns over time.” Senators Richard Durbin, Elizabeth Warren, and Tina Smith had stated at the time. The US Department of Labour also raised concerns with the firm’s 401(K) citing the lack of legal clarity surrounding investment in the nascent sector.
In response to the claims, Fidelity had stated that its Bitcoin offering represented “the firm’s continued commitment to evolving and broadening its digital assets offerings amidst steadily growing demand for digital assets across investor segments.” It further noted that it believed that the secrete would represent a large portion f the financial industry in the future, suggesting that it would keep on rolling out new products as regulations allowed.
That said, if all goes well, Fidelity’s new Bitcoin trading product may usher in a tidal shift in the crypto industry, emboldening more firms to embrace crypto investments focused on individuals.