HSBC CEO says "volatile" Bitcoin is "not for us"
Noel Quinn’s comments come as Bitcoin tumbled by almost 50%
“We are not promoting it as an asset class within our wealth management business," he said, adding that, “for similar reasons”, the bank is “not rushing into stablecoins”.
Quinn’s comments come as Bitcoin fell from this year's record high of over £45,000 to just over £26,000, tumbling almost 50%.
Meanwhile, China, where roughly 65% of all mining globally is based, announced a crackdown on mining and trading behaviour, forcing cryptocurrency exchange platforms to suspend operations. Although Quinn made no mention of China in his comments, recent events might have influenced HSBC’s decision due to the country being inherent to the bank’s growth strategy, according to Reuters.
“I view Bitcoin as more of an asset class than a payments vehicle, with very difficult questions about how to value it on the balance sheet of clients because it is so volatile. Then you get to stablecoins which do have some reserve backing behind them to address the stored value concerns, but it depends on who the sponsoring organisation is plus the structure and accessibility of the reserve,” he told the publication, adding that his sceptical approach to Bitcoin stems from the difficulty of assessing the transparency of cryptocurrency ownership and issues with their ready convertibility into fiat money.
IT Pro 20/20: Understanding our complicated relationship with AI
The 16th issue of IT Pro 20/20 looks at the very human problems associated with artificial intelligenceDOWNLOAD NOW
Quinn’s statement comes weeks after NatWest non-executive director, board member, and chair of the bank’s risk committee, Morten Friis, suggested that the bank would refuse business customers who accept virtual currencies as payment.
“We have no appetite for dealing with customers, whether taking them on as new clients or having an ongoing relationship with people, whose main business is backed by an exchange for cryptocurrencies, or otherwise transacting in cryptocurrencies as their main activity,” Friis said during an online shareholder event last month.
His comments contrast Mastercard’s decision to support specific cryptocurrencies if they prove to be stable, secure, and compliant with industry standards and regulations.
2023 Strategic roadmap for data security platform convergence
Capitalise on your data and share it securely using consolidated platformsFree Download
The 3D trends report
Presenting one of the most exciting frontiers in visual cultureFree Download
The Total Economic Impact™ of IBM Cloud Pak® for Watson AIOps with Instana
Cost savings and business benefitsFree Download
Leverage automated APM to accelerate CI/CD and boost application performance
Constant change to meet fast-evolving application functionalityFree Download