PayPal is mulling a stock trading platform for US customers.

Big picture: Now is the perfect time to go into retail. JMP Securities estimates that over 10 million new investors entered the market in the first half of 2021 alone, aided by government checks and stocks. What’s more, platforms like Robinhood and Square have made it easier for newbies to get involved in retail, and it seems like PayPal wants a piece of that pie.

PayPal is reportedly considering expanding stock trading less than a year after launching the ability to buy, store and sell cryptocurrencies on its platform.

Sources familiar with the matter told CNBC that the payment processing company is looking at ways for users to trade individual stocks. Further confirmation of the rumors is that PayPal recently hired brokerage industry veterinarian Richard J. Hagen as CEO of Invest at PayPal to spearhead “an effort to explore consumer investment business opportunities.”

In accordance with Hagen’s LinkedIn Page, he joined PayPal in August 2021. This is the first time we hear about the Invest at PayPal division.

When pinged for comments CNBCPayPal drew attention to CEO Dan Shulman’s February comments about a long-term vision and “investment opportunity.”

Regarding PayPal’s plans, at least one source said they have already held discussions with potential industry partners. Another option is to buy out the existing broker-dealer, but in any case, the trading service is unlikely to be launched this year, one source said.

PayPal’s share price rose nearly 3.3% on the news.

Image Credit Anna Nekrashevich, Brett Jordan

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