Coinbase Eyes Australian Market with Crypto-Pensions Service Boosting Diversity

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In the face of detractors and doubters, cryptocurrency has solidified its hold as one of the staunchest investment avenues globally, with the famously volatile Bitcoin, emerging as a superior asset of the 2010s decade. More recently, the approval of a Bitcoin spot Exchange-Traded Fund (ETF) has added fresh allure to the crypto giant.

In recent reports, crypto exchange giant Coinbase has been indicated to be eyeing Australia’s burgeoning cryptocurrency market more closely. John O’Loghlen, the Asia-Pacific Managing Director, told Bloomberg that Coinbase is in the advanced stages of developing a new service geared towards self-managed pensions in the Australian market. This new feature would allow those controlling their pensions to diversify their portfolios with cryptocurrency.

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Retirement finance plays a crucial role in consumer’s lives, especially for those who prefer to manage their pension funds directly, and this option often allows more versatility. Cryptocurrency, being a high-value asset in the world of finance, has seen a surge of interest, with Australians among the prominent players.

Distinct individuals opt for various avenues, including investing in unlaunched crypto or speculatively trading pre-existing tokens. Even gambling with cryptocurrency has garnered followers. Cryptocurrency casinos have become particularly popular in Australia, with many players growing their crypto portfolio, further highlighting the demand.

The steam seems irrevocably on for the crypto train in Australia, with a mix of anon-casino fans and part-time crypto traders surfing the waves. While O’Loghlen didn’t delve into the specifics of the impending service, it is testimony to the solidifying place of crypto assets in traditional portfolios. Cryptocurrency, with its reputation to store value and hedge against inflation in the long term, makes for an ideal pension fund asset.

This move by Coinbase aims to service this purpose, bringing value and diversity to the Australian market’s retirement funds. “Self-managed super funds might just make a single allocation, set it and forget it,” remarked O’Loghlen during his interview.

Several shrewd investors also consider ETFs as an attractive way to venture into the crypto arena. Following the approval of the spot Bitcoin ETF, the injection of billions of dollars to various funds came as no surprise, with some even choosing to redirect money from other crypto schemes.

However, O’Loghlen remarked that Coinbase does not aim to steal business from these funds. Instead, he sees them creating a “rising tide” reaping benefits for everyone in the space and sparking increased interest from self-managed fund owners.

As per the Australian Tax Office, around $664 million from self-managed funds were on board the crypto bus in 2024, an impressive increment from earlier figures. Such burgeoning interest in crypto assets further highlights the sector’s growing acceptance and transformation from an initially scorned investment format to a viable retirement plan option.

The ongoing growth of the crypto sector offers myriads of investment opportunities, from ETFs to new platforms like the one Coinbase is introducing in Australia. Consequently, investors can enjoy a plethora of options, thereby driving demand and supporting market prices. The introduction of tokens in pension funds indicates a belief in their long-term value, suggesting a bright future for the crypto sector and putting to bed any notions of it fizzling out any time soon.

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Melinda Cochrane is a poet, teacher and fiction author. She is also the editor and publisher of The Inspired Heart, a collection of international writers. Melinda also runs a publishing company, Melinda Cochrane International books for aspiring writers, based out Montreal, Quebec. Her publication credits include: The art of poetic inquiry, (Backalong Books), a novella, Desperate Freedom, (Brian Wrixon Books Canada), and 2 collections of poetry; The Man Who Stole Father’s Boat, (Backalong Books), and She’s an Island Poet, Desperate Freedom was on the bestseller's list for one week, and The Man Who Stole Father’s Boat is one of hope and encouragement for all those living in the social welfare system. She’s been published in online magazines such as, (regular writer for) ‘Life as a Human’, and Shannon Grissom’s magazine.