As of Tuesday afternoon tones have taken a serious turn for Jamie Dimon, the JPMorgan Chase CEO. The CEO initially didn’t take cryptocurrency very seriously and shrugged it off as some sort of scam. Now things have changed as Dimon has acknowledged that blockchain technology can cut the future short for not only JPMorgan and Chase, but for banking as a whole.
The attitude adjustment came with Chase and JPMorgan’s annual report. In it the bank recognized cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum as risk factors to its business. They claimed that their newest competition can be their last competition. The report openly states, “Both financial institutions and their non-banking competitors face the risk that payment processing and other services could be disrupted by technologies, such as cryptocurrencies, that require no intermediation,”
In an attempt to beat out the competition, Chase and JPMorgan have put lots of money into bringing their products up to date. This way the companies can draw in new customers and keep interest at a peak for their current customers. The report further stated that, “Ongoing or increased competition may put downward pressure on prices and fees for JPMorgan Chase’s products and services or may cause JPMorgan Chase to lose market share,”
This follows a very similar report made by the bank’s rival, the Bank of America last week in their annual report. When approached, a spokesman from JPMorgan Chase refused to comment on why the bank suddenly sees cryptocurrencies as a risk.
That said, one can’t help but wonder if cryptocurrency will be just another hurdle for the banks to climb over as they continue to control our live or if cryptocurrency will be the factor that ends the banking system and welcomes us all into a new era. We can’t help but hope for the latter.