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JPMorgan Said to Have No Plans for Currency Challenging Bitcoin

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Dec. 10 (Bloomberg) -- JPMorgan Chase & Co. has no plans to introduce a competing product to Bitcoin, the digital money created as an alternative to currencies controlled by nations and banks, according to a person familiar with the matter.

JPMorgan, the biggest U.S. bank by assets, doesn’t have anything in development nor does it plan to produce virtual currencies to compete with Bitcoin, said the person, who asked not to be identified because the New York-based company’s strategy isn’t public. The Financial Times reported earlier today that the lender filed a U.S. patent application for a system that, like Bitcoin, allows users to make electronic payments anonymously and without fees.

The application is a renewal for intellectual property claims originally filed in 1999 covering “a method and system for conducting financial transactions over a payment network,” according to a document on the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office’s website. It was never intended to be a competitor to Bitcoin, the person said.

Jessica Francisco, a JPMorgan spokeswoman, declined to comment on the patent application.

To contact the reporter on this story: Dawn Kopecki in New York at dkopecki@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: David Scheer at dscheer@bloomberg.net

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