How Nasdaq is helping Bitcoin go mainstream

A Bitcoin sign is seen in a window in Toronto
A Bitcoin sign is seen in a window in Toronto, May 8, 2014. REUTERS/Mark Blinch (CANADA - Tags: BUSINESS LOGO) - RTR3OCTS
Photograph by Mark Blinch — Reuters

Bitcoin is getting some help from a major financial player: Nasdaq.

Nasdaq has signed on to provide trading technology for a startup, Noble Markets, that is looking to build a marketplace for buying and selling bitcoin and other digital currency, according to the Wall Street Journal.

From the Journal:

The agreement follows other Wall Street initiatives that could pave the way for financial institutions to own and trade digital currencies, which fans say have the potential to make the global financial system more efficient but which have also been marred by price fluctuations, investment scams and cybersecurity concerns.

The story also notes that a number of other financial power players have recently made moves to support Bitcoin: the New York Stock Exchange invested in Coinbase; regulators have approved public trading on the Digital Currency Group’s Bitcoin Investment Trust; former J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. executive Blythe Masters became CEO of a new digital-asset settlement service; and news broke on Monday that former NYSE CEO Duncan Niederauer will work as an adviser to bitcoin derivatives platform TeraExchange.

Bitcoin has skyrocketed to national attention over the past few years as the leading player in the emerging digital currency space. The exchange rate is highly volatile, but as of Monday afternoon, one Bitcoin was equal to $267.61. Bitcoin earned a bad reputation early on for being a favored currency of those looking to buy and sell illegal goods online, but as the Nasdaq deal highlights, it’s become increasingly accepted as a legitimate financial product.

For more on recent bitcoin news, see: Why March 10 was a big day for bitcoin

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