U.S. Banks Share Crypto View at Senate Hearing

CEOs of Wall Street’s top lenders shared their views and plans with regard to cryptocurrencies during a recent hearing before a Senate committee.

Bank of America’s Brian Moynihan, Citigroup’s Jane Fraser and Wells Fargo’s Charles Scharf shared their remarks on the emerging digital asset class before the U.S. Senate Banking Committee.

Cryptocurrency discussions are ramping up in the midst of growing interest from individuals and companies coinciding with increasingly concerned regulators.

The Joe Biden administration is proposing tax reporting for crypto transfers of over $10,000 while Securities and Exchange Commission chair Gary Gensler said earlier this month that the trading environmentcould benefit from greater investor protection.

Currently, we do not lend against cryptocurrencies and do not bank companies whose primary business is cryptocurrency or the facilitation of cryptocurrency trading and investment, BofA’s Moynihan said in the statement.We continue to evaluate the opportunities, risks and client demand for products and services related to cryptocurrency.

He also shared that the bank held over 60 blockchain-related patents though it has not found a use case at scale.

Citi’s Fraser highlighted «clear governance and controls» while approaching cryptocurrencies.

Citi is focusing resources and efforts to understand changes in the digital asset space and the use of distributed ledger technology, including demand and interest by our clients, regulatory developments and technology advancements, she said in the bank’s statement.

On blockchain, Wells Fargo’s Scharf said the bank was nearing an announcement of a pilot project using distributed ledger technology to «complete internal book transfers of cross-border payments» within its global branch network.

On crypto, Scharf also expressed caution.We continue to closely and actively follow developments around cryptocurrencies, which have emerged as alternative investments products, though their status as a currency and mechanism of payment remains fluid, he said in his testimonial.

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