The National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) — the federal regulator that oversees credit unions — announced that credit unions may partner with third-party digital asset service providers to give members access to cryptocurrencies and other digital assets.
Under the new guidance, credit unions could partner with a third-party to allow members “to buy, sell, and hold various uninsured digital assets with the third-party provider outside of the [federally insured credit union].”
The change is spurred by the large outflow of cash credit unions have seen going to cryptocurrency exchanges, and members’ desire to use their primary financial institution to venture into the crypto markets. For credit unions, the new guidance provides new opportunities for revenue in the digital asset marketplace, which has only continued to expand, as ordinary consumers are presented with easy access to cryptocurrencies and other digital assets.
The NCUA anticipates that further guidance may be necessary with the continued growth of digital assets and the technologies that make them available, but that this new guidance was a necessary step for providing clarity on the existing authority credit unions have.