Wells Fargo customers can no longer buy cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin on their credit cards, the company announced Monday. But they can still buy firearms.
The San Francisco-based bank joined some of its Wall Street peers in banning the purchase of cryptocurrencies on credit cards and said its decision is "in line with the overall industry."
"We will continue to evaluate the issue as the market evolves," Wells Fargo said in a statement. "We're doing this in order to be consistent across the Wells Fargo enterprise due to the multiple risks associated with this volatile investment."
J.P. Morgan Chase, Bank of America and Citigroup announced in February they would no longer let customers buy cryptocurrencies using credit cards, and like Wells Fargo cited credit risks and market volatility.
Capital One Financial said it has decided to ban cryptocurrency purchases with its cards, and Discover Financial Services has effectively prohibited cryptocurrency purchases with its credit cards since 2015.
After rallying more than 1,300 percent last year to almost $20,000 in December, bitcoin is down roughly 50 percent this year. The digital currency was trading near $6,720 as of 2:00 p.m. ET Monday after a 10 percent plunge over the weekend.
Wells Fargo has gone the opposite way of some of those banks in its stance on restricting firearms purchases. In March, the bank's CEO defended that decision, citing customers' right to choose.
"I don't know if banks or credit card companies or any other financial institution should be the arbiter of what an American can buy," Tim Sloan, Wells Fargo's CEO at the time, told the Charlotte Observer in March. "I don't know if Americans, regardless of which side of the issue you might be on, on whether or not folks should own guns or which type they should purchase, do they really want their bank to be making that decision?"
John Shrewsberry, Wells Fargo's chief financial officer, said after its quarterly conference call with investors that the bank had no plans to end business relationships with gunmakers and such a move would require "a legislative solution."
Citigroup was the first Wall Street bank to take a stance on the divisive gun control debate five weeks after a gunman killed 17 people at a high school in Parkland, Florida. The bank set restrictions on the sale of firearms to customers who are younger than 21 or have not passed a background check.
Bank of America said in April it would no longer lend to gun-manufacturing companies that produce "military style" weapons for civilians after what Anne Finucane, the bank's vice chairman, called "intense conversations" about company values.
J.P. Morgan Chase also said it has cut its exposure to the firearms industry. Business ties to gun manufacturers "have come down significantly and are pretty limited," Chief Financial Officer Marianne Lake said after first-quarter results.
Global AML Watchdog to Release Crypto Regulations By Next June
A global money-laundering watchdog has said it will begin publishing rules for international cryptocurrency regulation by next summer.
According to a Reuters report Friday, the Financial Action Tas
Sia Network Releases Hard Fork Code to Block Crypto Mining Giants
The sia blockchain network has released the formal code for an imminent hard fork that will block miners using hardware produced by Bitmain and other major manufacturers.
David Vorick, founder and
North Korean Hacking Group Lazerus Stole $571 Million in Cryptos: Report
North Korea's infamous hacking group, dubbed Lazarus, has managed to steal over half a billion dollars in cryptocurrencies, a report indicates.
According to an article published Friday by The Next
Bitcoin's Price Breaks Through Key Support As Stocks Go South
Bitcoin (BTC) has dropped out of the tight trading range seen recently, paralleling losses in the U.S. stock markets.
The leading cryptocurrency, which was trapped in a triangle pattern (narrowing
Chip Maker TSMC Forecasts Weaker Crypto Mining Demand in Q4
Chip-making giant Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) has predicted weak demand for processors from cryptocurrency miners for the fourth quarter.
TSMC, the primary supplier for crypto
Crypto Exchange Huobi Now Lets Users Swap Between 4 Different Stablecoins
Huobi, the Singapore-based cryptocurrency exchange, has just launched a new solution that enables users to switch between different types of fiat currency-pegged cryptocurrencies, or stablecoins, in e
Bitcoin Price Eyes Triangle Breakout Above $6.4K
Bitcoin (BTC) is again trading in a narrowing price range above $6,400, but the lateral trading may soon give way to a rally, according to technical studies.
The price consolidation comes after Mon
Security firm G4S Has Launched a Crypto Custody Service
U.K.-based security services company G4S now offers a crypto custody service aimed to protect investors' holdings of digital assets.
Announcing the move in a press release on Oct. 16, the firm said