Welcome to the ‘self-driving car of finance’ – Business Insider – Business Insider

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Everyone is talking about blockchain.

The nascent technology has the potential to allow a digital
asset to be securely and seamlessly transferred from one party to
another, eliminating the need for third-party intermediaries and
shortening settlement time to seconds.

Based on
recent data
, the estimated annual budget for blockchain
initiatives in 2016 is $1 billion.

Earlier this week,
Business Insider interviewed chief technology officers, chief
innovation officers, startup founders, and venture
to ask what one thing they thought would
transform financial services in the next decade.

The immense potential for
blockchain resonated from startup founders to incumbent industry

Here’s a sampling:

  • Debra Walton, the chief
    product and content officer at Thomson Reuters, “firmly
    believes that the blockchain will have as profound of an effect
    on the world of business and commerce as the internet … The
    impact of blockchain will be most felt in how transactions are
    executed, cleared and settled.”
  • CommonBond cofounder and CEO David Klein said the technology
    would “be the most disruptive thing to happen in finance over the
    next decade. Possibly over the next century.”
  • He added: “It will affect all areas of finance: lending,
    asset management, payments, and more. And its impact won’t be
    limited to just the finance industry; it will affect the finance
    functions inside every company around the world regardless of
  • Mike Bodson, the president and CEO of DTCC, also believes
    blockchain has the potential to revolutionize the financial
    services industry. We’re still a long ways away, however. “We’re
    probably overestimating the impact blockchain will have on the
    industry in the next two years, and underestimating its impact in
    10 years,” he said.
  • He sees the technology as
    having the potential to modernize the post-trade environment in
    areas like clearance, settlement, and payments. While the scale
    of US equities makes it less likely to be affected by
    blockchain, areas like repo

    can benefit from the “efficiencies and a
    single version of the truth it provides.”

While Wall Street and other
industries are clearly excited about the technology, there are
still significant challenges ahead, including uncertainty over
regulation, the immense cost of overhauling legacy systems, and
major security issues.

CommonBond CEO David Klein
David Klein, the cofounder and CEO of


Earlier this month, hackers stole $72 million worth of bitcoin
from accounts at the Hong Kong cryptocurrency exchange Bitfinex.
Back in June, hackers stole $55 million worth of ether, a rival
to bitcoin.

recent Greenwich Associates survey

of 119 bankers and financial technology
executives on concerns over the blockchain found that they were
worried first about other banks seeing their transactions and
then about the security of the transactions themselves.

It?s clear that these security
issues will need to be addressed before the widespread
implementation of blockchain.

Suresh Kumar, the chief
information officer at BNY Mellon, believes that a high potential
emerging technology like blockchain will be a game changer only
“if they achieve a network effect, which means we need to work
together to establish standards.”

That echoes another emerging
industry, that of the self-driving car.

“Think of the impact that the
computer had on industry,” Klein of CommonBond said. “That’s what
we’re talking about with blockchain. It’s the self-driving car of

Welcome to the ‘self-driving car of finance’ – Business Insider – Business Insider}

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