JP Morgan Asset & Wealth Management CEO Mary Callahan Erdoes says the banking giant’s clients see bitcoin as an asset class and “want to invest.”
The remarks came in a video clip from “Bloomberg Wealth with David Rubenstein” released Tuesday by the media outlet, but that was first recorded on June 7.
When asked by Rubenstein whether she would facilitate transactions for clients who love Bitcoin, Erdoes appeared to defer, arguing it’s “blockchains and digital currencies” that are “changing different financial markets.”
She went on to remark that there is debate as to whether Bitcoin is an asset class or not, but that JP Morgan’s clients increasingly believe it is.
“A lot of our clients say that’s an asset class, and I want to invest, and our job is to help them put their money where they want to invest,” she said.
Erdoes clarifies that JP Morgan doesn’t view “Bitcoin as an asset class, per se.” She points out that only time will prove Bitcoin as a store of value and implied that the volatility of the bitcoin price in U.S. dollars was one of JP Morgan’s reservations.
In April it was announced JP Morgan planned to allow wealthy clients to invest in Bitcoin through a forthcoming actively managed fund. They will likely become the second largest bank to offer access to bitcoin, second to Morgan Stanley.
As of July, the wealth management divisions at major banks including Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase and Bank of America do not currently allow their advisors to offer direct bitcoin investments. However, J.P. Morgan does provide exposure to customers through investments in companies like MicroStrategy, Square, and Tesla, who hold bitcoin in reserve.
The company has also been hiring for roles for its blockchain unit Onyx, a project which was announced in October of 2020 to reflect their “commitment to innovation, and to build a “more inclusive financial system.”