BBVA (BBVA.MC) of Spain announced on Friday the introduction of a bitcoin trading app for private banking customers in Switzerland interested in digital asset investing.
The bank said that the new company, which will be launched on June 21, would feature bitcoin trading and custody services to expand to additional cryptocurrencies in the future. It said that it would not provide advice on these kinds of investments.
A Strong Demand
BBVA Switzerland’s Chief Executive Alfonso Gomez stated in a statement that during a slow roll-out, it had identified a “strong demand” among investors for crypto-assets or digital assets to diversify their portfolios despite their volatility and high risk.
The trading service comes at a time when institutional interest in bitcoin is increasing. Investors and some businesses view the biggest cryptocurrency as a hedge against inflation as governments and central banks turn on the stimulus faucets.
El Salvador has become the world’s first nation to recognize bitcoin as legal cash, despite repeated warnings from central banks across the globe that cryptocurrency owners should be prepared to lose their whole investment. more info
Major countries, notably China and the United States, have indicated a harsher stance in recent weeks while also formulating plans for their own central bank digital currency.
According to a staff letter obtained by Reuters, Goldman Sachs (GS.N) disclosed details of a cryptocurrency trading division in May. more info
BBVA said on Friday that it would restrict this new bitcoin service to Switzerland due to the country’s clear legislation and extensive use of digital assets.
“Its expansion to other countries or different kinds of clients will be contingent on whether the markets fulfill the necessary conditions in terms of maturity, demand, and legislation,” the company said.
BBVA has a wholly-owned franchise in Switzerland, focusing on international banking services.