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Gold commodities market could enter the blockchain, according to new industry initiative

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A partnership between the World Gold Council (WGC) and Swiss-based DLT infrastructure and application provider aXedras Group could make gold trading more accessible and streamlined, though insiders are skeptical, according to a Bloomberg report Sunday. 

See related article: Diamond Standard raises US$30 mln to ramp up tokenized asset distribution

Fast facts

  • The WGC’s initiative “Gold247” proposes bringing a major segment of the multi-trillion-dollar gold market into Web3, using blockchain to create a database to track the world’s tradable gold bars.
  • The next step in the plan could be to create a digital token backed by physical gold that can be more easily traded than the 400 oz gold bars, David Tait, who heads the World Gold Council, told Bloomberg.
  • In recent years, gold and digital tokens have competed as an investment alternative to stocks, bonds and fiat currency. Bitcoin is often referred to as “digital gold” by some advocates. 
  • The council has tried a merger between the two assets before, helping to launch a gold-backed exchange-traded fund in 2004. However, there are barriers that can prevent retail investors from swapping ETF shares for actual gold bars, according to Bloomberg. 
  • Instead, the initiative’s envisioned gold-based tokens would “defragment” the gold market, increasing accessibility and transparency of the actual physical commodity and stimulating demand from everyday investors, WGC says. 
  • However, market players gathering for a conference on Oct. 16 were skeptical that Gold247 will gain traction, with so many previous attempts to disrupt failing, reported Bloomberg. 

See related article: Can ETFs in Australia do for Bitcoin what they did for gold trading?

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