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Morgan Stanley dives even deeper into crypto by launching a research team | Invezz

invezz.com 16 September 2021 10:34, UTC
Reading time: ~2 m

Morgan Stanley, one of the largest banks in the US, has had a big change in attitude towards the cryptocurrency industry. From warning against the, claiming that the bubble has burst every time when the prices started dropping, and alike, the bank was transformed into a major supporter of digital currency sector, and in now aims to make it easier to reach for its customers.

To achieve this and bring its crypto involvement to the next level, the bank has appointed Sheena Shah to lead a brand new crypto-focused research division. Shah is known as a skilled currency strategist who worked for Morgan Stanley for over eight years, covering G10 currencies. Shah also contributed to the bank’s crypto research efforts.

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After seeing success in both areas, Shah has earned the role of being the team’s leader, and will focus on analyzing the impact of digital currencies on equities, fixed-income investments like treasury, corporate bonds, and more.

The bank’s executives noted that the launch of the team is in “recognition of the growing significance of cryptocurrencies and other digital assets in global markets.”

Banks are rushing into crypto to keep the demanding clients

As mentioned, the bank has been pushing into digital assets for over a year now, and during all that time, it was growing its own exposure to Bitcoin via different investment funds offered by Grayscale. Then, in March of this year, it introduced a Bitcoin investment tool for its own millionaire clients.

Institutional interest and demand for crypto have been skyrocketing for a long time now, so there is no surprise that the largest traditional institutions are rushing to join in an effort to remain relevant, especially amid the explosion of the DeFi sector, which threatens to offer decentralized banking services, and as such, is in direct competition with these banks.

They currently still have the advantage, of course, as DeFi is still underdeveloped and new, and it will be a while before it becomes a major threat. Still, its constant growth for over a year and a half now has convinced American banks that it is time to move, and that waiting for regulators to do their part first will mean a lot of missed opportunities.

Even the Bank of America itself created a crypto research group this July, with similar news coming from State Street, JPMorgan, Goldman Sachs, and now Morgan Stanley.

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