Visa won’t process transactions in bitcoin
Visa chief executive Alfred Kelly said the payments company would only accept fiat currency transactions.
Global finance giant Visa does not consider cryptocurrencies, such as bitcoin, an acceptable form of payment.
During an interview with CNBC at the National Retail Federation conference, Visa chief executive Alfred Kelly said the digital currency market was “still evolving” and that he doesn’t view crypto payments as credible.
“My take is that bitcoin is, much more today, a commodity that somebody could invest in… and honestly somewhat of a speculative commodity that people can invest in,” Kelly told CNBC’s Jon Fortt.
“Depending upon when you got into the crazy cycle of what’s happened with bitcoin over the last three months and whether you’ve gotten out, at the right time, you could have made a bunch of money.
“I don’t view it as a payment system player. In fact, we at Visa won’t process transactions that are cryptocurrency based. We will only process fiat currency-based transactions.”
Check out Kelly’s interview, beginning with his thoughts on cryptocurrencies, in the video below.
Earlier this year, a number of prepaid crypto debit card providers had their services suspended by Visa.
Bitwala, Crytopay, TenX and Wirex were affected. TNW published a statement from Visa Europe confirming it had terminated its partnership with WaveCrest Holdings, a global payment solutions company, after it had failed to comply with Visa’s operating rules. WaveCrest is the issuing partner for the affected parties.
The legitimacy of cryptocurrencies is a hotly debated topic among economists and trading strategists. A number of economists have raised concerns over the substance of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.
Late last year, UBS chief economist Paul Donovan claimed crypto was the “bubble to end all bubbles”.
“Cryptocurrencies only have value if accepted as currencies. However, they cannot be used for the most important transaction in an economy, and cryptocurrency supply can only rise and never fall (making them a poor store of value). To date, using cryptocurrencies requires (effectively) a simultaneous asset sale and purchase of goods or services,” Donovan said in a note to investors in December 2017.
Despite economists’ hesitations, the largest US options exchange, CBOE, launched bitcoin futures trading last year, offering investors an opportunity to bet on whether a cryptocurrency’s value will rise or fall over time.
However, cryptocurrency exchange accounts are rising rapidly, adding hundreds of thousands of users daily.