U.S.-based brokerage house Straits Financial LLC will accept bitcoin via payment processor BitPay to become the first U.S.-based Futures Commission Merchant (FCM) to do so.
Straits users will now be able to fund their investment and trading accounts with bitcoin. A boutique brokerage house, Straits’ acceptance of bitcoin will allow users to trade assets such as energy, precious metals, agricultural commodities and stock indexes in the multi-trillion dollar commodities market.
The move is intended to appeal to cryptocurrency enthusiasts, wherein bitcoin will be converted into currencies, via bitcoin payment processor BitPay and digital bank WB21.
Underlining the feature as “the next great step” in the Futures Trading industry, Straits President Joseph Mazurek stated:
BitPay and WB21 will help customers to easily convert their bitcoin holdings into currencies that can be used to fund their futures trading accounts and will provide the bitcoin community easier access to an alternative suite of investment options.
A transaction will initially see the bitcoin funds supported by BitPay, whereas WB21 will come in to play by offering real-time rates for currency conversion, which will then be processed via BitPay.
BitPay CCO Sonny Singh added:
Bitcoin offers one of the fastest, more secure ways for investors to fund trading accounts, and WB21’s real-time cross-currency conversion just makes this a better option for international trading.
As the biggest cryptocurrency around, Bitcoin is gaining a presence in exchanges in recent times. If brokerage houses and stock exchanges aren’t gearing toward transforming their settlement system into one powered by bitcoin’s technology, the blockchain, they are listing the cryptocurrency instead. In mid-2016, the North American Derivatives Exchange (Nadex) resumed its listing of bitcoin contracts.
Last month, Keza – an application that enables bitcoin users to invest the cryptocurrency in mainstream U.S. stocks was relaunched.
August 2016 also saw online securities brokerage TradeZero launch its ‘Dark Pool’ exchange to execute large trades of the cryptocurrency away from digital currency exchanges. The feature, claims the brokerage, will enable participants to move large quantities of the cryptocurrency without upsetting the market, thereby maintaining stability to lowering volatility.
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