Intercontinental Exchange, the parent company of the New York Stock Exchange, has been developing an online platform to buy cryptocurrency, according to a report by The New York Times.
The move, which The New York Times first reported Monday citing documents and people familiar with the situation, is another example of a traditional Wall Street firm diving into the nascent market for digital coins.
Georgia-based Intercontinental Exchange, or ICE, first entered the market for digital currencies via a cryptocurrency data feed, which went live in March. Notably, Wall Street bank Goldman Sachs said it was working on a cryptocurrency trading desk earlier in April, The New York Times earlier reported. A slew of trading firms have been trading crypto, including Chicago-based HFTs such as DRW and Jump Trading.
As per The New York Times report, the potential crypto platform by ICE would “allow large investors to buy and hold bitcoin.”
The exchange operator, according to the report, has also explored swaps, another financial instrument, which would be linked to bitcoin.
To be sure, the plan may not come to fruition. An ICE spokesperson did not immediately respond to Business Insider’s request for comment.
Whereas ICE’s exchange competitors — Cboe Global Markets and CME Group — have jumped into the crypto market via bitcoin futures, ICE has focused on data, and adding transparency to the marketplace known for its wild price swings and fraud via its data-feed product.
Nasdaq, which entered into a partnership with crypto-exchange Gemini in April, is also planning on launching a futures market for crypto. Also, Nasdaq’s CEO Adena Friedman said the firm could one day launch a crypto exchange.
Still, if ICE were to follow through on its reported plan, it would be the first established equities exchange operator to launch such a venue in the US.
The venture would potentially have a big leg up over existing crypto-exchange venues which lack the mature market structure of equities exchanges like NYSE and Nasdaq.
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