David Solomon, the CEO of Goldman Sachs, has denied that the bank had ever made any plans for a cryptocurrency trading desk, claiming that earlier press coverage indicating otherwise had been incorrect in their reporting.
Solomon made these remarks at a hearing before the US House of Representatives Financial Services Committee this week. The Committee was holding a hearing for ‘Holding Megabanks Accountable: A Review of Global Systemically Important Banks 10 years after the Financial Crisis’.
Back in 2017, Bloomberg first broke the news about the bank’s supposed plans to open a unit focused on crypto trading in 2018, and by September, Business Insider was informed that the project was on hold and that a Bitcoin derivative was also being considered. Chief financial officer Martin Chavez would later dismiss these reports as “fake news”.
Solomon told the hearing that Goldman Sachs has engaged with clients involved in clearing physically-settled crypto futures, but flatly denied the plans for a crypto trading desk:
“The first [Bloomberg article] wasn’t correct. Like others, we are watching and […] doing work to try to understand the cryptocurrency market as it develops […] but we never had plans to open a cryptocurrency trading desk… We might at some point in time, but there’s no question, when you’re dealing with cryptocurrency, it’s a new area […] it is unclear from a regulatory perspective, it’s unclear whether […] in the long run, as a currency, those technologies are going to work and be viable.”
Ohio Republican Congressman Warren Davidson, who was questioning Solomon over the media reports, himself voiced his belief that the U.S. is lagging behind other countries and failing to “take advantage of this thriving sector [crypto]” due to regulatory uncertainty.
As Cointelegraph previously reported, other CEOs in attendance at the hearing included JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon, who affirmed the value of blockchain technology but reiterated his belief that decentralized cryptocurrencies do not have any intrinsic value.
This week, a bill to exclude crypto from being classified as securities and foster more regulatory clarity was revised and reintroduced to Congress.
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