American Bank, a locally owned community bank based in Allentown, Pennsylvania, has announced its plan to enable its customers to buy and sell the two largest cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH), through a new crypto trading offering.
According to the report, this will be possible via the bank’s partnership with the crypto connect solution Bakkt. The solution is expected to launch in the second quarter of 2022.
Reacting to the new development, the President and CEO of American Bank, Mark Jaindl, said:
“As one of the pioneers in online banking innovation and, as the longest operating ‘online bank’ in the country, we are always looking for ways to enhance our customers’ banking experience.
“Bakkt’s robust capabilities create an entry point for us to drive engagement with our customers and seamlessly integrate cryptocurrency into our existing digital banking platform. We’re proud to say that we’ll be the first bank headquartered in the Lehigh Valley to offer access to crypto trading.”
According to the February 2022 study conducted by Cornerstone Advisors, cryptocurrency is massively winning the hearts of Americans. Based on the study, more than half of the Americans involved have already invested in either Bitcoin (BTC) or other cryptocurrencies, while others showcased their interest in doing so.
The Chief Revenue Officer at Bakkt, Sheela Zemlin, also said:
“Consumer saving and investing habits ebb and flow constantly, but more than ever we’re seeing consumer intrigue and interest in cryptocurrency grow.
“Research has indicated that consumers would prefer to access crypto from their existing bank, and we’re excited American Bank is partnering with Bakkt to provide customers a simple on-ramp to cryptocurrency within their trusted bank relationship.
“American Bank shares our view that banks have a short window measured in months or quarters to execute on their crypto strategies or risk being left behind.”
In the United States generally, banks have started showing vast interest in offering crypto-related services. For instance, in 2021, a host of prominent banks in the U.S., such as Morgan Stanley, started to offer wealth management clients exposure to cryptocurrency.
In March 2022, Morgan Stanley stated that customers with at least $2 million worth of assets at the bank would be able to access three Bitcoin funds.
Also, JPMorgan Chase & Co, Wells Fargo & Co, and Citigroup are among the other banks that offer crypto exposure to their wealth management clients.