Deutsche Sparkasse launches BTC, ETH trading service
The German Sparkasse is working on a project that will enable customers to trade cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum.
A committed team from the IT service provider S-Payment is preparing the idea with a banking committee in order to vote on the project at the beginning of the year. If the vote goes through, German savings banks can introduce cryptocurrency trading services. In Germany there are around 370 savings banks that are managed by the German Savings Banks and Giro Association and operate in a decentralized manner, i.e. each savings bank is independent and is managed centrally on site.
With a total customer base of 50 million and assets under management of 1.58 trillion US dollars, savings banks are considered the leaders among German financial institutions. The initiative comes after the newly formed government signed an alliance agreement that sees cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology as the main focus for the country’s development over the next four years. The plan provides for the bank’s customers to be able to buy and sell cryptocurrencies through their bank accounts without going through additional verification procedures.
Based on the principle of regional management, each savings bank decides whether or not to implement this innovation. Banks have expressed interest in the project and many German investors are also looking for other investments. The move comes amid rising prices and rising inflation in the euro zone to 4.9% last month, which puts further pressure on the European Central Bank to rethink its low interest rate policy. Helmut Schleweis is the President of the German Savings Banks and Giro Association, who has described the combination of low interest rates and rising prices as a toxic combination and will find it difficult to stop the decline in assets.
As recently reported, the asset manager Union Invest, the investment arm of the DZ banking group, is taking another small step forward to offer investors crypto investments. They will be making BTC as a smaller percentage of some of their funds. As recently reported, portfolio manager David Barthe said the company is considering adding BTC to their funds in smaller amounts, which represent 1-2% of their portfolio, and making adjustments. This will begin on an indefinite date in the fourth quarter.