In an interview with Yahoo Finance, Jane Fraser CEO at Citi Group talked about the future of finances and its potential integration with the crypto industry and digital currencies.
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Fraser addressed the question by talking about the potential use cases for crypto-assets and their capacity to improve the legacy financial system. Citi clients have shown great interest in cryptocurrencies as confirmed by the executive, she claimed:
(…) we spend a lot of time discussing (cryptocurrencies) with many of our partners and clients as well. It’s clear that digital assets will be a part of the financial services and financial markets (…).
Other banking giants in the U.S. have revealed a pressing demand from their clients to gain exposure to crypto-assets. This has led major banks in the country, such as Citi, Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan Chase, and others to offer cryptocurrency-linked financial products to their wealthy clients.
Thus, Fraser confirms once again that there is an increasing demand from institutions to enter the crypto industry. The executive believes this nascent asset class to be the future of finances and real-time payments.
In that sense, crypto is viewed as a tool to improve the legacy financial system and will become “ubiquitous” in that future, Citi CEO claimed. She added the following:
We see benefits from the digital asset space in processing, fractionalization, programmability, and transparency. You know, very geeky words (…).
Citi And Its Crypto Ambitions, How Finances Are Moving To A Next Phase
However, Fraser also mentioned the uncertainty surrounding the crypto industry, especially making an emphasis on regulations. In the U.S., many actors within the space and even inside the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) have asked for more clarity and a legal framework for cryptocurrencies.
High-ranking officials have taken the opposite road with most adopting an indifferent or hostile stance on the industry. If regulations tighten, the U.S. is at risk of a great crypto migration to more friendly lands, but the approval and posterior launch of a Bitcoin ETF seems to have put those fears under control.
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Still, many questions remain open, as the Citi CEO said, on the future of cryptocurrencies, their capacity to scale, their resilience, and the implementation of guardrails to “protect” retail customers. Fraser said:
For me as a CEO, I’m working to connect our clients to accept consumer payments, we are building the infrastructure for real time payment.
Despite its concerns, the banking institution is moving forward with building its own crypto infrastructure to facilitate the adoption of this asset class to its partners and clients. Fraser added:
We are doing so cautiously because the space is moving so quickly and not all the guardrails that you would like to see are yet in place. And, you know, as a banking CEO, I do believe guardrails are important and necessary for the safety and soundness of the financial system.
As of press time, the total crypto market cap stands at $2.67 trillion and shows some strength in the daily chart.