The price of the digital currency bitcoin rose sharply on Monday with news that the U.S. is set to have its first regulated exchange.
San Francisco-based Coinbase offers storage services for bitcoin users, and the company is set to open a new exchange on Monday morning. Called Lunar, it will have regulatory approval in half of the states in the U.S., according to a report in The Wall Street Journal, including New York and California.
"A proper U.S. exchange that's trustworthy, that's insured, we were the first guys to get insurance on our bitcoin in some form, this will really help bring a dampening of volatility," said Coinbase co-founder Fred Ehrsam on CNBC's "Squawk on the Street."
The company last week announced a major new round of funding and has now raised $106 million. The New York Stock Exchange and Spanish bank BBVA are just some of the company's high-profile backers, along with USAA bank, the investment arm of Japanese telecom NTT DoCoMo, and former Citigroup CEO Vikram Pandit.
"I think the New York Stock Exchange sees this as an important trend," said Ehrsam. "Really, what's happening in the background is, you're seeing some hedge funds dip their toe into the water in bitcoin in increasing amounts. It wouldn't surprise me if you see some banks get involved here at some point, as well."