Q&A with Trista Kelley from DL News

Q&A with Trista Kelley from DL News

DL News is an independent news organisation that provides in-depth reporting on the largely misunderstood world of cryptocurrency and decentralised finance. From original stories to investigations, their journalism is accurate, honest and responsible.

Current industry coverage is often lacking knowledge, overly negative, and rarely forward-looking. Their experienced team of journalists, alongside crypto experts, deep dive into companies and transactions, and undertake on-chain analysis to unpack complex stories ultimately publishing truly original reporting.

DL News offers maximum transparency, undertaking serious investigative coverage with no commercial compromise or bias.

We recently had the pleasure to speak with DL News‘ Editor in Chief, Trista Kelley. Trista is DL News’ founding Editor in Chief. Trista’s background includes; Deputy Editor in Chief for Dow Jones-owned Financial News, Markets and Finance editor at Business Insider UK, worked at Bloomberg for nearly 14 years (covering EMEA market infrastructure, high-frequency traders, equity markets, activist short sellers and merger arbitrage strategies) and also spent seven years covering the health industry, biotech start-ups, and pharmaceutical M&A. Trista is a University of Colorado, Boulder graduate majoring in journalism.

What was your journey like from biotech, to TradFi, to becoming a chief editor of DL News?

I loved reporting and editing about all those disparate topics, and it’s been a privilege being able to meet some of the smartest people in the world from all those sectors. At DL News, I get a unique view of both the crypto space and the media industry, and am learning loads. It’s a blast.

How did you find transitioning from more traditional finance into the crypto market?

All markets have their quirks. The community and cultural aspect takes some getting used to, but from a macro standpoint, crypto is just another asset class – albeit a somewhat more volatile one with a broader retail trading base and a looser regulatory framework.

In all markets — crypto, equities, bonds, whatever — the challenge is differentiating between the signal and the noise, and following the money. Oh, and also, learning the jargon! 

From a professional trading standpoint, there are exciting possibilities on the horizon when it comes to settlement and payments. People who work with smart contracts might not know the goldmine they’re sitting on compared to those in traditional finance who have to face multiple layers of go-between with brokers and third parties that make the finance industry a byzantine mess.

Which new developments in the crypto space are you most excited about?

We’ve seen some surprising developments in the utilisation of defi into broad policy and project initiatives spanning from payments to derivatives trading to bond tokenisation. 

BlackRock’s entry into the spot ETF Bitcoin market is really upping the ante. And if BlackRock finds success with Bitcoin, the opportunities elsewhere are endless.

I’m also watching Fidelity Investments, which has 500 employees in its digital assets unit. It’s absolutely massive in this space.

The bond market alone is worth some $130 trillion, so if even a tiny sliver of that moves into the crypto industry, it will be incredibly exciting.

What are some of the biggest challenges facing the crypto industry right now? What are your thoughts on the future of crypto?

I think we’re going to see more and more mainstream adoption by big players like BlackRock and Fidelity, who no doubt do not want to be sitting on their hands when new technology threatens their businesses. 

On the institutional side, trading giants like Jump Trading Group and Jane Street are at the vanguard, seizing on an opportunity for arbitrage and volatility. 

The challenge perhaps is aligning the community aspect of some of the more niche areas of crypto — the defi developer space particularly – with the mainstream. The mainstream is probably less interested in decentralisation and permissionless-ness, they just want ease of use and accountability. For the pro traders, it’s more of a counterparty risk issue. In DeFi, the invisible counterparties are a feature, not a bug. 

Squaring these circles both practically and culturally I think is among the biggest challenges.

What are some of the biggest opportunities for crypto in the next 5 years?

I am incredibly pro-London when it comes to crypto. London is by far the biggest currency trading hub, it handles a sizable chunk of the world’s clearing – an industry that provides third-party collateral to de-risk big trades. That means the market plumbing is already in place. Add to that the talent and other infrastructure, plus the political will, and in my view, this city can pull it off, versus its rivals in the UAE, Europe, Asia, and the US. 

We want to give an enormous thank you to Trista Kelley for her time and great insights into the crypto market. And to DL News for allowing us to showcase their site. We recommend all our subscribers sign up for their newsletter and check their website regularly to keep up to date with developments within the crypto market, from an unbiased and factual standpoint.

Assembled by Karolis Kundrotas

📅 This Week in Crypto 📅

Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao boasted last week that his crypto exchange reached 150 million users, with 22 million added in the last three months alone. Investors may be shrugging off regulatory issues because the exchange offers deep liquidity. Liquidity trumps regulation as pro-crypto traders’ top concern, Coalition Greenwich (a division of CRISIL) found. Volume on CME GroupCboe Digital and Coinbase may grow on a relative basis for US institutions.

D8X, a Polygon Labs-based perpetual futures decentralised exchange, or perp DEX, has raised $1.5 million in pre-seed funding from investors led by Polygon Ventures. The exchange wants to bridge institutional investors to the DeFi space to trade crypto derivatives.

Fireblocks has expanded its services to make it easier for banks to tap into crypto, setting out to help existing customers including BNY Mellon and BNP Paribas tap into crypto. The timing is notable, with more financial titans exploring the asset class and the crypto winter showing signs of thawing. Still, banks hesitate to dive in amid risks associated with crypto, with some cutting off services to the industry.