The latest media reports suggest that the largest British commercial and retail bank has said that it will stop facilitating the companies that transact or accept digital currencies in payments. The head of National Westminster (NatWest) Bank’s risk committee, Morten Friis, said,
We have no appetite for dealing with customers, whether taking them on as new clients or having an ongoing relationship with people whose main business is backed by an exchange for cryptocurrencies or otherwise transacting in cryptocurrencies as their main activity.
The Guardian reported that the British bank considers cryptocurrencies a high risk, and hence, it plans to take a very cautious approach with the digital assets. It further added that NatWest would keep observing the regulator’s activities and respond if things change.
Not long ago, we reported that there is a lot of uncertainty when it comes to the level of government regulation surrounding cryptocurrency. Earlier this year, the country’s Financial watchdog FCA warned the residents about the potential risks of digital currencies and even warned them that they should be prepared to lose their money.
Given the current circumstances, the announcement from NatWest did not come as a surprise as such a major financial institution would want to distance itself from digital assets until the regulators give it the go-ahead. Besides that, in the United Kingdom, such investments don’t fall under customer protection, meaning that they are left with no resources in case of any loss.
This comes as major companies across the world start to accept cryptocurrencies as a mode of payment. Interestingly, NatWest is likely to conduct additional criminal research for special customers interested in investing in digital assets.