An online trading platform that boasts more than 11 million retail clients has been rumoured to be moving into the crypto industry. TDAmeritrade is believed to be working with Chicago-based crypto exchange ErisX to facilitate offering digital asset buying and selling on its platform.The news is just the latest example of an established platform opening up to the crypto asset industry. Previous examples such as those by Fidelity and Bakkt highlight that demand for digital currency-related services is clearly increasing, despite bearish sentiment continuing to abound.Is TDAmeritrade Bringing 11 Million Investors to Crypto?According to a report in crypto news resource, The Block, TDAmeritrade is moving into the digital asset industry. The publication cites an anonymous source “familiar with the situation” as linking the online trading platform with ErisX, a cryptocurrency trading venue based in Chicago.The story goes that TDAmeritrade is involved with testing how to link up different traditional asset exchanges with the ErisX platform. If true, this could mean that a whopping 11 million retail investors will soon have the opportunity to take on direct exposure to crypto on a platform that they are already highly familiar with.A spokesperson from ErisX declined to give the names of specific partners involved in the testing. However, they did confirm that there was indeed the aforementioned integration testing, which involved creating a “production environment with a limited number of participants to optimise the process in advance of our public launch.”SCOOP ! ErisX is testing its new crypto exchange, and TDAmeritrade is one firm looking to link up with the markethttps://t.co/9M9Pl6DVcJ— Frank Chaparro (@fintechfrank) April 24, 2019Lending additional credence to the rumours is the fact that TDAmeritrade has been busy creating a cryptocurrency-focused team. An internal message from the firm, also reported by The Block, stated that Sunayna Tuteja would take up a position as the Head of Digital Assets at the traditional asset online trading venue.Is the Market Finally Catching Up to the News?If you look at the total market capitalisation for all crypto assets since December 2017, you’d be forgiven for thinking that some terrible event happened that completely crushed all optimism for the financial revolution started by Bitcoin ten years ago.However, there has been no such black swan event. In fact, in terms of development, there has been plenty. Perhaps most telling that the demand for crypto is in the ascent rather than descent is the fact that some of the largest money managers and most established investment institutions are developing their own products and services to support the industry.The largest of these is the Intercontinental Exchange, who are currently waiting on regulatory approval for the much-anticipated Bakkt platform, along with Fidelty, the multi-trillion-dollar investment giant that recently launched its own custody platform.Evidently, there continues to be vast demand for such services from established and trusted names in the world of investments. The likes of the ICE and Fidelity are not going to put their reputation on the line for some flash-in-a-pan fad. Additionally, the fact that TDAmeritrade and the others that cannot yet be named are reportedly working with ErisX to offer their own crypto trading services only serves to highlight this further. Perhaps the recent price increases so far in 2019 finally represent this enduring interest in the of Bitcoin and other crypto assets. Related Reading: Do the Recent Trading Volume Highs Mark an End to the Bitcoin Bear Market?Featured Image from Shutterstock.
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