Banking Capital markets News

Wells Fargo to offer cryptocurrency exposure to investors

wells fargo

Yesterday Darrell Cronk, President of Wells Fargo Investment Institute, which published a cryptocurrency paper, told Insider that the company is in the final stages of selecting a manager for a solution it will offer to qualified investors.

The document cites two reasons for the 2020 boom, being the pandemic and increased regulatory clarity. One aspect mentioned specifically is that “banks received regulatory permission to custody cryptocurrencies.” However, we’d note that in the past couple of days, the new Acting Comptroller of the Currency, Michael Hsu, said that bank’s custodying cryptocurrencies will be reviewed. 

“Cryptocurrencies, in our view, have now evolved into a valid consideration as a portfolio option for qualified investors,” says the report, which identifies low five and ten-year correlations with traditional asset classes. It also refers to ongoing risks. Hence it won’t be offering it to retail investors quite yet.

“Exposure through a professionally managed fund potentially may serve alongside private equity and debt strategies as the primary means of capturing long-term trends from fintech and other secular developments arising from digitization in the economy,” it says.

The bank has almost $2 trillion in assets under management. Several other banks are adopting similar strategies, including Goldman SachsMorgan StanleyBBVA and Julius Baer.

Meanwhile, Wells Fargo has participated in various blockchain activities, including Wells Fargo Digital Cash for intragroup cross border payments. It has participated in the Symbiont Synaps syndicated loan

Multiple blockchain startups focusing on capital markets have been backed by Wells Fargo, such as Axoni and OpenRisk.