JPMorgan Chase & Co has for the first time provided banking services to cryptocurrency exchanges, according to a report by The Wall Street Journal.
Two unnamed sources familiar with the matter revealed that both exchange accounts were approved in April, with transactions now beginning to be processed.
While America’s largest bank is not handling cryptocurrency transactions on behalf of the exchanges, instead processing dollar transactions for US-based clients and providing cash-management services, the development marks a significant moment in crypto history.
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Only three years ago, JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon dismissed Bitcoin (BTC) as a “fraud”. In the following years, however, the bank has become increasingly crypto-friendly, launching its own coin and developing Quorum, an enterprise blockchain solution.
The exchanges involved are among the most well-known and most regulated in the crypto space. Gemini is founded and run by the Winklevoss twins, who first rose to prominence in a lawsuit which accused Facebook (FB) founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg of stealing their idea for a social network.
While their 2019 ad campaign stating “crypto needs rules” earned the ire of some in the Bitcoin community, the twins have become two of the leading advocates for cryptocurrency adoption.
Reacting to the recent Bitcoin halving, Cameron Winklevoss said: “By investing in Bitcoin, you are facilitating a peaceful transfer of power from governments to the people.” Tyler Winklevoss described the event as “momentous”.
The cryptocurrency world, already buoyed by recent comments by hedge fund billionaire Paul Tudor Jones, will hope that JPMorgan’s acceptance of these two exchanges will spur the wider acceptance of digital assets, or at least an increased interest.
It should also be noted, however, that this is not the first time a major exchange has been accepted by a leading financial institution. Coinbase previously had the most esteemed banking relationship in the crypto world, which came to an end in 2019 when Barclays (BARC) cut ties with the San Francisco-based firm.
By mid-afternoon Tuesday trading, Bitcoin stands down around 1.2 per cent at $8,788.