Earlier this week, multiple media outlets reported that Goldman Sachs had dropped its plans to launch a cryptocurrency trading desk for its clients. The bank’s Chief Financial Officer, Marting Chavez, called those reports “fake news” while speaking at the TechCrunch Disrupt Conference on Thursday.
"I never thought I would hear myself use this term but I really have to describe that news as fake news.”
According to CNBC, Chavez clarified that Goldman has never had a concrete timeline for its cryptocurrency plans. Instead, the bank was committed to exploring cryptocurrencies “over time.” He suggested that some may have misunderstood the bank’s efforts in this area:
"When we talked about exploring digital assets that it was going to be exploration that would be evolving over time. Maybe someone who was thinking about our activities here got very excited that we would be making markets as principal and physical bitcoin, and as they got into it they realized part of the evolution but it’s not here yet."
Chavez also confirmed that Goldman Sachs is currently trying to satisfy its clients’ desire for some form of Bitcoin derivative, noting:
"The next stage of the exploration is what we call non-deliverable forwards, these are over the counter derivatives, they're settled in U.S. dollars and the reference price is the bitcoin-U.S. dollar price established by a set of exchanges."
The CFO also addressed Business Insider’s claim that the bank was now focusing attention on custodial services for digital currencies. He acknowledged that Goldman is interested in providing that solution for clients, but suggested that it may be some time before that happens.