The old-bitcoin companies on nyse exchange is leaping into the digital age with an index to value bitcoin. Click Here to find out more.

The Mashable Velocity graph shows how quickly people are sharing this article on the social Web. New York Stock Exchange President Thomas Farley poses for a photo on the floor of the NYSE, Monday, June 9, 2014. The New York Stock Exchange is diving deeper into the world of Bitcoin with the introduction of a bitcoin pricing index. The index, which will be made available through NYSE’s Global Index Feed and free on its website for a limited time, is intended to serve as a definitive benchmark for valuing the currency — in the same way that the LIBOR index is used to measure global interest rates. We are now going to use our name, reputation and global index provider stature to provide bitcoin values that the rest of the market can look to,” says Tom Farley, who serves as president of NYSE, the venerable financial institution that has come to symbolize Wall Street and capitalism more broadly. It’s a feature with a backstory that stretches back years.

Around the time that the price of bitcoin first began its remarkable rise in late 2012 and early 2013, Farley was approached by two men from Europe who pitched their plans to launch a bitcoin exchange. Farley had heard generally about bitcoin before, but he decided to devote a weekend to heavily researching the new digital currency. I left at the end of that weekend thinking this thing might have legs,” Farley recalls. We need to keep an eye on this stuff.

That weekend helped kickstart Farley’s quiet push to find the 223-year-old stock exchange an early entry point into the still controversial and uncertain world of bitcoin. The new bitcoin pricing index marks its first in-house product. More to the point: It put NYSE under the control of ICE founder Jeff Sprecher and his right-hand man Tom Farley. Farley, 39, got his start as a financial technology banker in the late 1990s amid the tech boom, before launching his own cloud-based risk management company and getting approached by Sprecher in 2006 to work with him. Sprecher made Farley the president of NYSE last year, making him the second youngest man to ever hold that position.

He set to work modernizing the organization. New technology does not intimidate us, it excites us,” Farley says, effectively summing up the new mindset of NYSE. Bitcoin in particular excited him, both because of the interest in the currency and the blockchain technology behind it, which serves as a transaction database. A year ago, Farley was put in touch with Coinbase, one of the best funded bitcoin startups, and began laying the groundwork for a possible investment. He says the NYSE would consider similar investments. With bitcoin, you don’t have to make a particularly huge investment in order to have the right seat at the table, in order to do some skunk works development, in order to stay abreast of the technology,” he says. NYSE is among the most notable financial institutions embracing bitcoin to some extent, but it’s far from the only one.

Circle, a bitcoin startup looking to make it easier for businesses and consumers to use the currency. And Larry Summers, the former U. 1,000 per bitcoin at the end of 2013. That decline followed the collapse of one of the largest bitcoin exchanges, Mt.

Gox, and concerns over regulations. Some might argue that the lower price and notable backing could lead to greater stability going forward. Even so, there is always the chance that the whole currency could one day just go bust — but Farley says NYSE will deal with that outcome if it happens. We’re willing to make some investments and even take on some risk earlier in the lifecycle of a new technology than some of our competitors,” he says.