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Nasdaq CEO: Cryptocurrencies Are at “The Height of a Hype Cycle”

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Adena Friedman, President and CEO of Nasdaq, spoke about different capital markets at the Bloomberg Invest Summit held in New York. When the host, Joel Weber, asked Friedman what “disruptive technological forces” were the most important in her view, she listed blockchain technology among the other two options.

Friedman said blockchain was fascinating because it could ‘disrupt’ industries in the future. “Harder to implement because it requires an entire network to deploy it simultaneously. But I think it’s something that over time could also be really … a very interesting force in our business,” she added.

Friedman told Weber that she hadn’t bought any cryptocurrency yet. She also explained that Nasdaq is taking a “research-oriented approach” to its position on cryptocurrencies.

“I do believe that the construct of a cryptocurrency is something that is starting to become a construct that we can understand, that could become part of what I would call the financial element of the internet,” said Friedman. However, she added that it is currently “a speculative asset class” which “doesn’t necessarily have kind of a foundational purpose in terms of international commerce.”

Friedman explained that even so, the vision of creating a cryptocurrency is clear – to allow global payments at a cheaper cost. Without taking any names, she said that eventually one of the cryptocurrencies will emerge as the winner.

Since cryptocurrencies are still unregulated, Friedman said that they are at “the height of a hype cycle”. She applauded crypto exchanges for their efforts in trying to regulate the services as much as they could.

Nasdaq currently provides technological services to a few crypto exchanges. On June 4th, Japanese financial services company SBI Holdings launched a cryptocurrency trading platform VCTRADE”. The company decided to use Nasdaq’s exchange trading system to offer XRP as the first cryptocurrency.

Image Credit: Bloomberg

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