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Mastercard To Help Banks Offer Cryptocurrency Trading

Credit card giant Mastercard (MA) says it will make it easier for banks and other financial institutions to trade cryptocurrencies.

Specifically, Mastercard says it will act as a “bridge” between Paxos, a cryptocurrency trading platform that is already being used by financial payments company PayPal (PYPL).

Mastercard said it will handle regulatory compliance and security, which are two of the main reasons banks have been avoiding dealing with digital coins and tokens.

Mastercard added that its own polling shows that demand for cryptocurrencies remains high despite a wave of thefts and bankruptcies that has swept through the industry in recent months.

Furthermore, Mastercard said that 60% of consumers it polled said they would feel more comfortable with cryptocurrencies if they were offered through their existing bank.

The payments company said its role is to keep banks on the right side of regulation by following cryptocurrency rules, and that it will help to verify transactions and provide anti-money-laundering services to financial institutions.

Mastercard said it plans to pilot the program with Paxos in the first quarter of next year, then expand it around the world throughout 2023.

Mastercard’s stock is down 22% this year at $288.69 U.S. a share.