2015 has been a year of change for digital currency, with major banks and other financial institutions showing serious interest in the technology and derived benefits of cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology. Within the last three months alone, more than 20 international banks have announced involvement in research regarding blockchain technology or other aspects of the digital currency environment.
US Stock exchange NASDAQ was among the first to announce such involvement, revealing in May that they had been investigating the use of a distributed ledger in their private stock sales systems. NASDAQ Vice President Frederick Voss has recently spoken about the project and where he sees the technology’s place in the future financial system.
Read the full story below.
With a raft of financial institutions and international banks announcing their involvement in blockchain and distributed ledger research, many of them involved with collaborative projects, the future of digital currency and its underlying technology has never been more interesting. One of the earliest of those announcements came from the U.S. NASDAQ stock exchange in May 2015. The NASDAQ revelation that the exchange had been researching the distributed ledger technologies for the past 12 months with a view to implementing the technology for private stock sales is a clear example of how digital currency technology can effectively drive innovation within the traditional financial industry.
In an interview with Coindesk, NASDAQ Vice President and head of blockchain strategy, Frederick Voss, offered his view of the where the industry is heading and how digital currency technology will be utilized in the future.
Voss acknowledged that the Bitcoin blockchain remains the best ledger system available today, and noted that they NASDAQ is not irrevocably wed to any single technology and remains open to using alternative ledgers as they prove superior. He was quick to point out that it is the underlying technology of the distributed blockchain ledger itself that holds the potential for the operation of financial markets.
With close to 25 staff members working on the research, NASDAQ is obviously invested in finding solutions to take full advantage of the technology and is focused on its Nasdaq Private Market system as an area where implementation could be beneficial.
With the system currently consisting of digital representations of physical, paper based certificates, and physical representations of digital assets in additional markets, the distributed ledger offers the type of potential solutions that are lacking with the systems currently in use. Voss also noted that the automated, 24/7 operational aspect of the technology could help it overcome some of the biggest hurdles facing the financial industry today.
For proponents of digital currency and the technologies that empower it, this interest by the NASDAQ and other financial organizations is important for a number of reasons. It is, of course, one more indication of the far-reaching potential for blockchain-related solutions, something that the distributed ledger’s advocates have been talking about for a number of years now. Perhaps more importantly, however, is the fact that this interest in the technology that empowers cryptocurrency is one more step on the path to gaining greater mainstream acceptance of everything related to digital currency.
In the end, as more and more companies, governments, and individuals become more familiar and comfortable with the technological security these ledgers can provide, many of the current barriers preventing wider adoption of digital currency will begin to erode as well.