Coinbase Files To Become Member Of National Future Association
Coinbase has recently applied to be a member of the National Futures Association and hopes to list crypto futures products on the exchange. Applying for the membership is the first step towards achieving the goal, as well as registering as a futures commission merchant (FCM).
A tweet by the firm stated, “This is the next step to broaden our offerings and offer futures and derivatives trading on our platforms.”
Coinbase Inc. still appears to not be a member of the National Future Association however, Coinbase Financial Markets Inc. is now a pending member. Coinbase Financial Markets current CEO is Joseph Nikolson, who became part of the exchange in 2018. Joseph Nikolson has been a registered member of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) for over 20 years.
The National Future Association website has made note of Coinbase’s previous run-ins with financial regulators. The website shows that Coinbase Financial Markets appears to have few incidents with regulation; however, Coinbase itself has previously settled charges with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission earlier this year on allegations that the company self-traded digital assets. It is also suggested that Coinbase allowed a former employee to wash trade Litecoin.
It is not clear whether Coinbase has applied for any of the necessary licenses with the CFTC- the federal regulator that oversees futures products in the US. An application for a license would be a sure sign that Coinbase will start listing futures products on the exchange.
According to an exchange spokesperson, who has spoken to CoinDesk, “We anticipate that this may be a long process to approval but are looking forward to working with the NFA as they review our application. Coinbase is excited to be taking this next step to broaden our crypto offering and further growing the crypto economy.”
What are futures products?
Futures contracts are legal agreements to buy or sell something at a predetermined price at a specific time in the future. The agreement tends to be between parties who do not know each other. These contracts are mainly used to transact financial products or commodities. Once a futures contract is signed, the buyer is obligated to buy an asset and the seller is obligated to sell an asset at the predetermined future price and time.
If Coinbase does go forward with their plan, it may be possible to pre-buy and pre-sell crypto assets through the exchange.