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HSBC says it has completed $250bn FX trades using blockchain

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Blockchain appears to be gaining traction in the banking sector with HSBC announcing that it has settled $250bn worth of forex trades using the technology in the last year.

In a statement, the bank revealed that it has settled over three million forex trades and made over 150,000 payments using blockchain since February.

HSBC did no provide any data on forex trades settled using traditional processes though it did say that those settled by blockchain represented a “small” proportion of its business overall.

The finance industry has previously been reluctant to adopt blockchain but this new data may be enough to convince those who are hesitant about implementing the emerging technology.

From investment to implementation

Banks and other financial institutions have invested heavily in blockchain with hopes that it could help simplify their operations and cut costs in processes from settlements to payments.

However, few banks have moved from the testing stage to implementation of the technology in large-scale projects citing high costs, uncertainty over regulation and the risk of disruption to their existing systems as the reasons they have not moved forward.

According to HSBC, blockchain technology has allowed it to automate manual processes and has reduced its reliance on external technology.

In a statement to the Financial Times (opens in new tab), the banks head of forex and commodities Richard Bibbey explained how its FX Everywhere project is helping to increase the efficiency of transactions, saying:

“HSBC . . . conduct[s] thousands of foreign exchange transactions within the bank, across multiple balance sheets, in dozens of countries. FX Everywhere uses distributed ledger technology to drastically increase the efficiency of these internal flows.”

Via Reuters (opens in new tab)

Anthony Spadafora
Anthony Spadafora

After working with the TechRadar Pro team for the last several years, Anthony is now the security and networking editor at Tom’s Guide where he covers everything from data breaches and ransomware gangs to the best way to cover your whole home or business with Wi-Fi. When not writing, you can find him tinkering with PCs and game consoles, managing cables and upgrading his smart home.