JPMorgan Chase chief executive Jamie Dimon went on a tirade last week in a conference in New York, where he condemned Bitcoin and threatened to fire any employee who will trade the cryptocurrency.
Dimon’s rant against Bitcoin, which caused the currency’s price to drop to the $3,800 level, didn’t come as a surprise as the banker has been an outspoken nemesis of Bitcoin. The surprise came several days after Dimon’s diatribe made headlines.
On September 15, JP Morgan Securities Ltd. and Morgan Stanley bought an estimated €3 million worth of XBT shares, reported Bitcoin.com, quoting the public records of Nordnet trading logs.
XBT shares, also known as exchange-traded notes (ETNs), are commonly used by mainstream investors and financial management firms to invest in Bitcoin through regulated channels in the public stock market. Denmark-based Saxo Bank offers Bitcoin-based notes called the Bitcoin Tracker, which track the cryptocurrency’s price movements against the Euro and U.S. dollar.
A screenshot of the Nordnet trading log, posted on Twitter by Bitcoin trader @IamNomad, showed several companies, such as Goldman Sachs and Barclays, have also bought the dip caused by Dimon’s trash talk and the recent regulatory crackdown in China. But among these companies, it was JPMorgan’s team that have purchased the most number of XBT notes.
Bitcoin developer Andrew DeSantis also revealed on Twitter that the banking giant had purchased Bitcoin after its price slid using many accounts under JPMorgan Securities Ltd.
As @IamNomad pointed out, it’s possible that a department at JPMorgan could have invested in Bitcoin XBT as the company’s traders are forbidden from directly investing in Bitcoin. Another plausible explanation of JPMorgan’s bank transfers to Nasdaq Nordic is that the bank’s clients have been buying Bitcoin ETNs in Bitcoin XBT.
The bigger picture, however, is that JPMorgan has been playing both sides, acting as a broker dealer on one side while talking trash on the other—a role it has been doing for years. After all, the banking giant was among the chief architects of the 2008 global financial crisis, which paved the way to the rise of cryptocurrencies.
Does this mean that heads will start rolling at JPMorgan? Or will Dimon honor his word and fire himself?
Your move, sir.
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