The Vanguard Group is testing a blockchain-powered platform that will allow asset managers to trade currencies while avoiding the big investment banks.
On Oct. 3, Bloomberg reported that the United States-registered investment advisor group, Vanguard, is going after a piece of the global currency market that handles $6 trillion each day and is dominated by firms such as JPMorgan Chase and Deutsche Bank AG.
A source familiar with the matter said that the newly tested blockchain platform has been operational for over two months while handling several trades already.
By entering the global currency market, Vanguard could unsettle some of the major investment banks that have ruled the sector for decades.
Campbell Adams, a former senior currency trader at Deutsche Bank, believes this could happen if enough users join Vanguard’s platform. He said:
“In theory, it sounds great because you can reduce your costs if you can match directly with someone else who has a countervailing interest. Yet it will require a critical mass of users.”
Vanguard, which has over $5 trillion in assets under management, is “currently piloting a project focused on improving the efficiency and reducing the risk of FX hedging,” a spokeswoman for the investment group said, without going into further details.
Banks join JPMorgan’s blockchain network
Cointelegraph previously reported on Sept. 20 that OCBCbecame the first Singapore-based bank to join JPMorgan Chase’s blockchain network and is now one of the 134 banks from the Asia-Pacific region that are participants in the Interbank Information Network (IIN).
Germany’s largest bank, Deutsche Bank, joined IIN in the beginning of September. JPMorgan said it is targeting 400 agreements with banks by the end of 2019, hinting that more leading banks are set to join the network in the near future.