During remarks at this week’s Consensus: Invest conference, New York Stock Exchange chairman and Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) CEO Jeff Sprecher asserted that digital assets are not going anywhere, despite the current bearishness in the crypto markets. In response to a question about the lower prices, Sprecher chose to address the issue of whether digital assets can survive:
“The unequivocal answer is yes. As an exchange operator it’s not our objective to opine on prices.”
Sprecher also expressed his belief that Bitcoin will continue to be the measuring stick for the cryptocurrency industry, despite the existence of other coins with better technology. He compared the situation to that of the Dow Jones industrial Average, which is often criticized for its failure to accurately represent the broader economy:
“Often times in finance, it’s not about being the best — it turns out to be about being the broadest and the most commonly accepted and for whatever reason bitcoin has become that.”
Still, Sprecher suggested that cryptocurrency’s future rests in regulated markets. ICE’s Bakkt is now expected to launch in January – the company recently announced a delay in its previously-announced November launch - and plans to offer futures trading for Bitcoin. The company’s ambitious goal is to offer more secure asset custody and more accurate Bitcoin price discovery.
Bakkt CEO Kelly Loeffler believes that the company’s planned offerings should appeal to institutional investors who have been waiting for a more secure market for Bitcoin and other digital assets. She said, “We’re creating that infrastructure that doesn’t exist today, which we think is a big opportunity for institutional investors to come in.”