Last week, the news surfaced that HSBC is forbidding customers from buying shares of the firms, dealing in Bitcoin and the news is now confirmed by one of the Bank’s officials.
As Reuters reported on Monday that the Bank is disallowing customers from buying stocks of Microstrategy; a business analytics and mobility platform. Reuters quoted a statement from HSBC:
“HSBC has no appetite for direct exposure to virtual currencies and limited appetite to facilitate products or securities that derive their value from VCs (virtual currencies),”
The confirmation came after a screenshot of an email came up in the news; that was, reportedly, preventing customers from buying MicroStrategy stocks and had also noted that the bank does not provide any facilities to the companies or firms dealing in virtual assets i.e Ethereum or Bitcoin.
The email specifically mentioned HSBC’s subsidiary, available in Canada and Britain, “HSBC InvestDirect”.
A few of the questions are still remaining unanswered on the bank’s end i.e. What is the scope of the bank’s directions? Is it Canada or Britain specific? Which are the firms or companies whose shares are not to be brought?
Moreover, it is notable that the Microstrategy currently holds 91,579 BTCs. According to the calculations done by Reuters, 80% of the firms’ aggregated holdings of $6.8 billion are in BTCs, which accounts for 5.5 billion in US dollars.
Recently, Michael Saylor, founder, and CEO of Microstrategy was listed among the top cryptocurrency tycoons by Forbes. With a net worth of $2.3 billion, Michael Saylor was second on the list topped by Cameron Winklevoss and Tyler Winklevoss (siblings and partners) with a net worth of $3 billion each. Microstrategy and its CEO Michael Saylor are some of the top investors in Bitcoin.
Lastly, as far as HSBC is concerned, it is sort of strange that when a lot of banking giants are making their way into the crypto industry, Britain’s top investment bank is imposing a ban on it.