BlackRock is looking into cryptocurrencies says CEO

The Chief Executive Officer of BlackRock said that the company has assembled a working group to look at blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin, but cautioned he does not see massive investor demand.

“We are a big student of blockchain,” Fink said in an interview with Reuters. Adding that he doesn’t see “huge demand for cryptocurrencies,” the world’s largest asset manager has a working group studying it.

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Any move to invest in cryptocurrencies or to use blockchain by BlackRock would mark a pivot for the company and a major institutional endorsement for the insurgent technology, Reuters reported. The company managed $6.3 trillion in assets as of June 30.

Fink has previously railed against bitcoin, calling it an “index of money laundering.” Virtual currencies have been shrouded in doubt due to excessive volatility in the market resulting in wild price swings. Bitcoin rose to a high of $20,000 late last year but has declined since.

Many industry experts believe that increased involvement from institutional investors like in the cryptocurrency space will boost confidence in an otherwise dubious market. Last year CME Group and CBOE launched bitcoin futures products and this year Cohen Private Ventures invested in Autonomous Partners cryptocurrency-focused investment fund.

Financial regulators around the world are concerned about the speculative nature of cryptocurrencies and their possible use for illicit activities. China and South Korea have both banned a practice known as an initial coin offering.

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