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SocGen Introduces Crypto to a $2 Trillion Market

  • This asset-backed debt is latest proving ground for tokens
  • French bank issues 100 million euros of bonds to itself
Inside Bitmain Technologies Ltd.'s Bitcoin Mine
Photographer: Bloomberg/Bloomberg

A bond market as old as capitalism itself has emerged as the latest proving ground for cryptocurrencies.

A unit of Societe Generale SA sold 100 million euros ($112 million) of covered bonds -- debt backed by mortgages -- in the form of digital tokens with the French bank as the only buyer. The idea of last month’s pilot issue conceived by what the bank called an internal startup was to test how the technology behind virtual currencies can be used to cut costs and speed settlement for the securities.