JPMorgan Chase & Co. is venturing into the world of digital tokens based on blockchain technology, with the aim of improving international payments and transactions. However, regulatory approval remains a key obstacle for this advanced form of payment.
A Bloomberg report indicates that the New York-based investment bank is further embedding itself in the blockchain world by introducing a new kind of digital deposit token to better facilitate payments on its network.
In layman’s terms, deposit tokens are digital stand-ins for the deposits that customers hold in their commercial banks. Using blockchain technology, these tokens are intended to make transactions and settlements much more efficient.
The speed of transactions with deposit tokens could lead to a significant decrease in transaction costs.
While JPMorgan is optimistic about its deposit tokens, regulatory authorization is still pending.
The planned deposit token has a different focus than JPM Coin, the bank’s effort to create a dollar-backed stablecoin for interbank transfers.
JPM Coin is mostly aimed at serving JPMorgan’s institutional clients, while the deposit token is engineered to make it easier to transfer funds to clients at different banks. The deposit token is also particularly useful for settling trades that involve tokenized securities or financial products on a blockchain.
Both the deposit token and JPM Coin are intended to integrate smoothly with JPMorgan’s compliance mechanisms, meeting requirements like know-your-customer protocols, anti-fraud safeguards, and regulatory reporting.
JPMorgan has a history with blockchain, having introduced JPM Coin in 2019, which has already been used for transferring both dollars and euros among its select corporate clients.
In February 2023, the bank indicated that deposit tokens could gain traction in the decentralized finance (DeFi) sector and possibly trade alongside stablecoins. The bank views the tokenization of standard deposits as a revolutionary move that can improve accessibility across major blockchain networks.
Last June, the bank took a significant step in global blockchain adoption by collaborating with six major Indian banks to launch an advanced blockchain platform designed for dollar transactions between banks in India’s emerging financial hub. This pioneering pilot project is expected to run for a prolonged period and marks a significant milestone in the global acceptance of blockchain technology.
Shortly thereafter, JPMorgan extended the reach of its blockchain payment system, JPM Coin, to include euro-based transactions, targeting their corporate clients. This strategic decision highlights their commitment to innovation and their increasing prominence in the blockchain financial sector.
While the company is progressively adopting blockchain, its CEO, Jamie Dimon, has mixed feelings about cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, terming it a “highly speculative bubble” among other criticisms. However, he has spoken positively about the limitless potential of blockchain technology.
As of this writing, Bitcoin’s price stands at approximately $25,876, with a market capitalization of around $504.08 billion, as per CoinMarketCap data.