Goldman Sachs appoints a new global head of digital assets, exec reveals interest in token tied to fiat

Goldman Sachs has promoted a managing director of internal funding operations to its global head of digital assets. The London-based Matthew McDermott stepped into the role in June of this year, and he's already eyeing a possible token project.

McDermott told CNBC that the investment bank is "exploring" the creation of its own fiat-tied token, remarking: "We are exploring the commercial viability of creating our own fiat digital token, but it's early days."

JPMorgan released its own coin for blockchain payments last year, and Goldman Sachs seems to be taking notice. McDermott has hired Oli Harris, JPMorgan's former head of digital asset strategy, as an executive director of digital asset strategy. Harris helped develop JPM Coin during his time with the bank. 

McDermott also indicated he's interested in using distributed ledger technology to solve market inefficiencies in the traditional financial system. He told CNBC that the securities finance and repurchasing markets are "ripe for standardization."

Prior to McDermott, Justin Schmidt held the role of head of digital assets. Schmidt's LinkedIn has not been updated to reflect the change in position and Goldman did not comment on Schmidt's position. 

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Aislinn Keely joined The Block in the summer of 2019. She is a member of the outlet's policy team, holding down the legal beat. Before The Block, she lent her voice to the NPR affiliate WFUV, where she reported and anchored newscasts in addition to some podcast work. Aislinn is a proud Fordham Ram and editor-in-chief emerita of its newspaper. When she isn't writing or reporting, Aislinn is running and rock climbing.