The prospect of blockchain technology remaking financial services just moved a step closer to reality after banks including Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and JPMorgan Chase & Co. completed a successful six-month test in the $2.8 trillion equity swaps market.
The program, managed by blockchain startup Axoni, kept track of the swaps contracts after they were executed, recording things like amendments or termination of the deals, stock splits and dividends, and achieved a “100 percent success rate,” Axoni said in a statement Monday. Other participants include the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, Citigroup Inc., BNP Paribas SA and Credit Suisse Group AG.
“We’re on a path to take this forward,” Axoni Chief Executive Officer Greg Schvey said in an interview. “We know the thing works now.”
Blockchain software has captivated Wall Street because it could vastly reduce the cost of back-office operations and speed up trade clearing and settlement times. Banks have to set aside capital while they wait for transactions to be settled, so billions of dollars could be freed up for other uses if trade times go down to minutes from days or even weeks.