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CBA presses pause on crypto pilot

CBA presses pause on crypto pilot

Commonwealth Bank of Australia has put on hold plans to offer customers cryptocurrency through its banking app, amid widespread volatility in the crypto markets.

The bank said in November that it had partnered with crypto exchange and custodian, Gemini, and blockchain analysis firm, Chainalysis to design a service that will be offered to customers through a new feature in the app.

A pilot programme was initiated that provided access to up to ten selected crypto assets including Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash and Litecoin.

However, with the crypto markets in turmoil, the rollout has been suspended, with no time set on when it will resume.

In a tech briefing to investors, CEO Matt Comyn says: “As events of the last week have reinforced, it is clearly a very volatile sector that remains an enormous amount of interest. But alongside that volatility and awareness and I guess the scale, certainly globally, you can see there is a lot of interest from regulators and people thinking about the best way to regulate that.

“Our intention still, at this stage is to restart the pilot, but there is still a couple of things that we want to work through on a regulatory front to make sure that that is most appropriate.”

The Australian federal Treasury is currently consulting on regulation around cryptocurrency, with submissions open until 27 May.

“We want to continue to play a leading role in providing input into that and shaping the most appropriate regulatory outcome,” Comyn told investors.

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