Nasdaq ‘exploring’ bitcoin futures but sees more potential in blockchain, CEO says

While discussing bitcoin at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Nasdaq CEO Adena Friedman said on Tuesday the exchange is in an “exploratory phase” of launching a bitcoin futures contract.

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“We want to make sure that we chose to … if we enter the market in terms of providing a future in the market that No. 1 have client demand and No. 2 that we put the right risk management protocols in place to make it so that people feel confidence in what we are providing, and how that becomes an investable product,” Friedman told FOX Business’ Maria Bartiromo on “Mornings with Maria.”

The Cboe and Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME), launched bitcoin futures trading last December, adding more credibility to the cryptocurrency, but Friedman sees blockchain as “having the great promise to create more efficiency in global trade.”

The success of bitcoin has put cryptocurrencies on the map, but they wouldn’t exist without blockchain -- the technology that allows cryptocurrencies to be bought and sold.

PayPal COO Bill Ready also sees better long-term potential in the blockchain technology.

“As an engineer by background,” Ready told Bartiromo, “the blockchain technology that bitcoin sits on top of, I think, it is a fundamental breakthrough in computer science and so there’s tremendous long-term opportunity.”