Briefing

JPMorgan Chase to create digital coins using blockchain for payments

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The bank plans to roll out “JPM Coin” in the next few months, the first cryptocurrency backed by a U.S. bank. Customers will be able to use the coin to transfer money to another JPMorgan customer over the blockchain. (Reuters)

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Talking point: The initiative is surprising in that it comes from a bank whose CEO, Jamie Dimon, called Bitcoin “fraud” in 2017. He later backpedaled slightly, but maintained that he wasn’t interested in crypto. The bank has made clear, however, that JPM Coin isn’t your typical cryptocoin, noting that it supports “cryptocurrencies as long as they are properly controlled and regulated.” This particular coin will be redeemable for a single U.S. dollar, which means its value should be fairly stable. The bank is launching a trial period for the coin, starting with select clients, like large corporations that traditionally make international payments via wire transfers.