Nomura offers its first bitcoin derivatives, just as crypto markets tumble

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FILE PHOTO: Nomura Securities trading floor is pictured at the company's Otemachi Head Office in Tokyo

HONG KONG – Nomura has begun offering bitcoin over-the-counter derivatives to clients, it said Friday, the latest move by a traditional financial institution into the cryptocurrency industry, even as markets are in turmoil.

The trades, executed on the CME by crypto asset trading firm Cumberland DRW this week, were the Japanese investment bank’s first digital asset trades, said Nomura’s head of markets, Asia ex-Japan, Rig Karkhanis in a statement.

“Working with institutional-grade counterparties will allow us to scale into the increasing demand from our clients,” he said.

Many global investment banks have been looking to offer clients more crypto related services, responding they say to demand from institutional investors and private clients for access to what had been a fast growing sector.

However, crypto markets have tumbled this week as a meltdown in TerraUSD, one of the world’s largest stablecoins, sent digital tokens, already swept up in a sell-off of riskier assets, into meltdown.

Bitcoin hit a 16-month low of around $25,400 on Thursday.

(Reporting by Alun John; Editing by Kim Coghill)

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