When the economic recession hit around the world in 2008, something good came out of it—the world’s first cryptocurrency, Bitcoin. It also began a certain amount of distrust with traditional trading mechanisms, which continues to today. Ten years later, cryptocurrencies are poised to transform the global currency environment and are becoming the go-to option for seasoned investors, as well as neophytes just getting in on the game. So popular is cryptocurrency as an investment option that even the chief executive of the International Exchange Inc. (ICE), owner of NYSE, admits that crypto is trusted more than the Federal Reserve.
In a recent interview with Bloomberg, ICE CEO Jeffrey Sprecher said that cryptocurrencies shouldn’t be viewed as an alternative investment, and that ICE was considering a futures contract option in the future. Sprecher went on to add, “There is a trend here we can’t ignore in my mind, so I don’t discount it. People put more faith in a guy named Satoshi Nakamoto that no one has ever met than they do in the U.S. (Federal Reserve).”
Cryptocurrency’s immaturity has a tendency to keep a lot of investors away, although this is rapidly changing. Nonetheless, just as stock exchanges went through a “growing up” period when they were first launched, so will crypto. In Sprecher’s words, “I wouldn’t rule out anything around currency.”
Sprecher indicated that ICE has all its cards on the table, and is strongly considering Bitcoin (SegWit-Coin BTC) futures. If the year plays out as analysts expect, with a second half that rivals last year’s activity, ICE could definitely make the move.
Bitcoin futures are currently available only on two exchanges—CBOE and CME. Both exchanges, based in Chicago, are leading the charge while others watch and wait to see how they perform. Colorado-based LedgerX has also stepped up, offering a small line of Bitcoin derivatives. Those that aren’t quite ready to pick up the ball could find themselves having to play a lot of catch-up, or sit on the bench.
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