Citigroup, one of the world’s largest currency trading banks, is awaiting regulatory approval to begin trading bitcoin futures.
The bank confirmed it is looking to increase its clients’ crypto exposure by trading bitcoin futures contracts on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME), a popular forum for digital asset trading among institutional investors.
Futures trading allows investors to speculate about the short term price movements of a commodity, such as bitcoin. When CME futures contracts expire investors are paid in cash meaning that they do not need to own any crypto to participate.
“Our clients are increasingly interested in this space, and we are monitoring these developments,” Citigroup said in a statement.
“Given the many questions around regulatory frameworks, supervisory expectations, and other factors, we are being very thoughtful about our approach. We are presently considering products such as futures for some of our institutional clients, as these operate under strong regulatory frameworks,” the spokesperson added.
The bank recently revealed to that it had experienced surging demand for crypto products amongst investors since last August, in comments to The Financial Times.
Far from being the only major bank to offer its clients crypto products rivals Goldman Sachs beat them to it, debuting a Bitcoin futures trading product for clients in June 2021.
Citigroup previously offered clients access to Ether exchange traded notes (ETNs) back in 2017, but the project was scrapped during the crypto market crash.