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ICYMI: Nasdaq’s Freidman Says Open to Becoming CryptoMart

Traders Magazine Online News, May 1, 2018

John D'Antona Jr.

Is it time to switch gears? Or is it time to branch out?

Exchange operator Nasdaq is open to the very notion of moving from its equity market roots and becoming a cryptocurrency exchange. Yes. As first reported by Reuters, Nasdaq’s Chief Executive Officer Adena Freidman said the bourse could launch or migrate in part to a cryptocurrency exchange in the future as the regulatory environment evolves.

Freidman, like other executives, has become keenly aware of the virtues of diversifying her exchange’s revenue stream and meeting the evolving needs of the financial marketplace. She made her comments following Nasdaq’s quarterly earnings call last week.

While some have likened the crypto-trading world to the Wild West in terms of risk, there are also those who see tremendous rewards as the asset class remains lightly regulated and ripe for innovation and profit. Freidman is one of the latter, as long as regulators overseee the sector in some way.

“Over time, if it ultimately does morph into a regulated environment, it does give us an opportunity to participate as a marketplace, but I think that is a longer road and it doesn’t have a certain path right now,” she said.

While not actually saying Nasdaq will execute crypto trades just yet, the operator is said to be exploring the sector and opportunities. Just last week, Nasdaq announced it would provide market surveillance to the Gemini Exchange, a crypto mart founded by the Winklevoss twins.

As reported by Traders Magazine, Gemini announced via its own blog that it launched a block trading platform – Gemini Block Trading that went live Thursday, April 12th.

Market makers on Gemini Block Trading only receive quantity, minimum quantity, and the collar price — they do not receive any other information (i.e., side, price limit, etc.) related to the block order. If a market maker agrees to “make a market” that satisfies the Indication of Interest, the block order will be filled.

“Block Trading enables our customers to buy and sell large quantities of digital assets outside of Gemini’s continuous order books, creating an additional mechanism to source liquidity when trading in greater size,” said Cameron Winklevoss, president and co-founder of Gemini.

In accordance with Gemini’s commitment to an equitable, transparent, and rules-based marketplace, block orders will be electronically broadcast to participating market makers simultaneously, ensuring best execution and price discovery for those participating in the program. Block orders do not interact with our continuous or auction order books.

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