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Navigating cryptocurrency: Building on consumer trust with innovative technology

  • The significant market capitalization of cryptocurrency and its growing popularity are creating a strong movement to incorporate cryptocurrency into payments, investments and banking capabilities
  • As mainstream curiosity and interest in cryptocurrency increases, more companies are facing strategic decisions around how to accommodate the use and consumer demand of the new currencies
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Navigating cryptocurrency: Building on consumer trust with innovative technology

This is part two of a three part series by Fiserv promoting their latest point of view paper, Three Cryptocurrency Actions for Financial Institutions.

Financial institutions have a tremendous opportunity to provide cryptocurrency access to an expansive number of consumers. Financial institutions can provide accessibility through existing core platforms and digital channels to help develop a digital currency identity that mitigates security concerns and reduces barriers to entry. Cryptocurrency as an asset and as a payment option are two areas that have caught the attention of consumers. 

Cryptocurrency as an asset

Offering the ability to buy, hold and sell cryptocurrency or enabling consumers to see their cryptocurrency holdings alongside their traditional bank accounts sounds straightforward, but it will require collaboration between cryptocurrency platforms, core platforms and financial institutions. To that end, Fiserv is committed to developing capabilities that will allow financial institutions to enable consumers to buy, hold, and sell bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies through their financial institution relationships. Fiserv is working to provide ways for financial institutions to connect to or white-label cryptocurrency wallet software.

Cryptocurrency as a payment option

Cryptocurrency payment capabilities are already cropping up as various payment vehicles incorporate cryptocurrency options. Merchants such as Walmart are also exploring cryptocurrency payment options, in addition to large technology companies, including Apple® and Amazon® . 

Cryptocurrency also has the potential to disrupt the cross-border payments industry, which is hindered by technology limitations. While demographics of early adopters highlight younger generations’ enthusiasm for cryptocurrency, interest in this new, innovative payment option is gaining traction among all age groups. The PYMNTS.com report shows similarities in cryptocurrency transaction size across generations: 

  • 31% of owners made a purchase between $100 and $1,000 
  • Among boomers, 45% of current and former cryptocurrency holders made purchases in that range, compared with 30% of Gen Z 

It’s important to note that cryptocurrency payment solutions can come in several forms. The most traditional uses cryptocurrency, such as bitcoin, as a medium of exchange the same way we use dollars and other fiat currencies. Where things can get more interesting, however, is using cryptocurrency and blockchain solutions to improve the speed, security and availability of payments. 

Innovation creates potential 

Buying and selling cryptocurrency today can position financial institutions to capitalize on future-use cases that may emerge. Relatively early adoption can help financial institutions gain credibility as cryptocurrency solutions become more mainstream. 

With that in mind, it’s crucial to keep an ear to the ground to see what developments occur in cryptocurrency from technological and consumer-demand perspectives. Communicating and collaborating with your technology partners can help you stay mindful of the latest developments. As cryptocurrency and blockchain continue to evolve, it’s important that financial institutions keep a forward-looking approach to the industry.

For more insights and action items for financial institutions navigating the cryptocurrency venture as it gains popularity, download Fiserv’s latest point of view paper.

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