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TD Ameritrade makes strategic investment in new crypto exchange

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US brokerage firm TD Ameritrade has backed a crypto exchange called ErisX, which aims to offer cryptocurrency futures and spot contracts on its platform.

The company announced yesterday that it had made a strategic investment in ErisX, as part of its efforts to “make digital currency products more accessible to retail clients”.

“Our retail clients are seeking to access and trade digital currency products in the same way they do with traditional capital markets – through a legitimate, regulated and transparent exchange,” TD Ameritrade’s executive vice president of Trading & Education, Steve Quirk, said in a press release, indicating that ErisX was the platform that could meet those needs.

JB Mackenzie, managing director of futures and foreign exchange at TD Ameritrade, echoed the sentiment in an interview with CNBC.

“We continue to see our retail clients seeking access to trade digital currency products,” Mackenzie told the news service yesterday. “We wanted to find a platform that would be fully regulated, and something that has that capital markets feel.” Mackenzie also highlighted the fact that ErisX would offer both futures and spot contracts on one platform.

TD Ameritrade has $1.2 trillion in assets under management and 11 million retail clients. As noted by CNBC, it was the first financial firm to offer approved clients access to the Bitcoin futures products that were launched by CME Group and Cboe Global Markets last December.

As for ErisX, the crypto exchange is regulated by the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), although some aspects of its offering are still pending regulatory approval, according to a TD Ameritrade spokesperson. The platform has also been backed by Cboe and high-speed trading company Virtu Financial, among other investors.

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