Goldman Sachs gives early assessment of digital currency

By Nicel Jane Avellana

Feb 21, 2014 11:35 PM EST

In response to clients' requests, Goldman Sachs has given its take on Bitcoin although it did not quite reveal the lender's official position regarding investment in the cryptocurrency, TechCrunch reported.

Based on the document, which TechCrunch got through a source close to the financial services firm, it seems that Goldman Sachs has a neutral stance on Bitcoin. In evaluating the currency and its effect to businessmen and consumers, the bank has not actively recommended it to its clients. It does try to take out the hype that surrounds it, the report said.

Goldman Sachs' report said, "2013 was the year when Bitcoin became a mainstay in mass media, to the extent that it has become hard to separate the effect of hype surrounding the currency from its fundamentals."

In its assessment, Goldman said that no "liquid derivative market" exists for the Bitcoin. It added that there is no "large market of B2B suppliers which companies can use for spending Bitcoin." It also reminds that no plans are underway at present for e-commerce giant Amazon to start accepting the cryptocurrency. All these lead to the fact that BTC markets provide little traction for large lenders. Minus the support of a financial giant, Goldman Sachs said Bitcoin is still too risky of an investment for the serious investor, the report said.

Goldman Sachs warns that Bitcoin is still far from being widely adopted despite the coverage it has gained in media and cryptocurrency's trading levels today. The bank does concede that there are ways that investors can make money from Bitcoin. The document also said, "As a full suite of financial services build up around Bitcoin, there will be numerous (mostly commission- based) revenue opportunities investors can focus on, including providing exchanges, wallets, payment processing, lending, derivatives and other services."

Although ardent BTC followers will find nothing new in the Goldman Sachs document, the fact that it is even present even under the veil of a discussion document, is a vital step towards the mainstream recognition of the Bitcoin, TechCrunch reported.

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