JPMorgan doubles down on crypto with deposit token

JPMorgan Chase & Co. is reportedly in the early stages of exploring a blockchain-based digital deposit token aimed at expediting cross-border payments and settlement processes.

JPMorgan Chase

While the lender has developed a significant portion of the necessary infrastructure for this new payment method, it won’t proceed with the token’s development unless it receives approval from US regulators. If approval is granted, the US biggest bank by assets could potentially launch this product for corporate clients within a year of receiving regulatory clearance.

Meanwhile, there is growing speculation among market participants that U.S. regulators may be favoring established Wall Street firms while taking regulatory actions against crypto-native companies.

“Deposit tokens bring plenty of potential benefits, but we also appreciate that regulators would want to be thoughtful and diligent before any new product gets developed and used. Should that appetite develop, our blockchain infrastructure would be able to support the launch of deposit tokens. relatively quickly,” a JPMorgan spokesperson told Bloomberg.

The move comes as JPMorgan (JPM) is expanding the usage of its blockchain-based settlement token, JPM Coin, to include euro-denominated payments.

JPM Coin serves as a payment rail and deposit account ledger, enabling participating entities to transfer fiat money held in deposit with the largest bank in the United States. Since its launch in 2019, the token has facilitated over $300 billion in transactions, establishing itself as one of the most prominent applications of blockchain technology by a traditional financial institution. That compares to  JPMorgan’s daily transaction volume of nearly $10 trillion through conventional means.

JPMorgan Chase revealed last year that more clients had already begun using its own cryptocurrency to instantly send and settle payments around the world.

The stablecoin facilitates the transfer of payments between institutional clients, the latest step in Wall Street’s evolving approach to crypto space. However, the coin is available only for international payments for large corporate clients, that have undergone regulatory checks.

The New York-based lender started trials of its JPM Coin in conjunction with corporate clients with the ultimate aim of speeding up transactions, such as cross-border payments and corporate debt issuance.

JPMorgan already gives its wealthy clients access to six cryptocurrency investment funds. However, it was not the only financial institution exploring the potential of cryptocurrency as part of its efforts to modernize their legacy investment vehicles.