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Morgan Stanley reveals $269 million investment in cryptocurrency

Morgan Stanley, the sixth largest banking firm in the United States, in a recent filing, revealed its $269 million investment in spot Bitcoin Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs), joining the league of big US banks investing heavily in cryptocurrency.

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filing revealed that the investment was made in Grayscale’s GBTC during the first quarter of 2024.

According to CryptoPotato, Morgan Stanley’s recent investment revelation places it as one of the top holders of Grayscale Bitcoin Trust ETF(GBTC), a type of Spot Bitcoin ETF similar to Blackrock’s own ETF.

Morgan Stanley with its significant investment in GBTC comes second to Susquehanna International Group which has a substantial $1.0 billion investment in GBTC.

According to Bitwise CIO Matt Hougan, approximately 700 professional firms have invested nearly $5 billion in spot Bitcoin ETFs by the May 15 deadline.

Matt Hougan described this growing trend as representing a historical scale of professional ownership, likening it to the very successful launch of gold ETF back in 2004.

Several other traditional financial firms have expressed their interest in purchasing spot Bitcoin ETF reflecting the growing institutional interest in crypto assets.

These financial firms, which include hedge fund managers and financial advisory firms, have gone all out to invest in the various forms of spot Bitcoin ETF available in the market.

On May 14, New York advisory firm, Pine Ridge Advisers, revealed a $205.8 million investment in spot Bitcoin ETFs. This investment comprises $83.2 million in BlackRock’s iShares Bitcoin Trust (IBIT), $93.4 million in Fidelity’s Fidelity Wise Origin Bitcoin Fund (FBTC), and $29.3 million in Bitwise’s Bitwise Bitcoin ETF (BITB).

In addition, the alternative asset manager, Aristeia Capital LLC, disclosed a substantial $163.4 million investment in IBIT on May 15. Similarly, Connecticut-based investment firm Graham Capital Management disclosed investments totalling $98.8 million in IBIT and $3.8 million in FBTC. Hedge fund manager Crcm LP also revealed a $96.6 million investment in IBIT.

New York-based hedge fund manager Boothbay Fund Management disclosed a significant $377 million exposure to spot Bitcoin ETFs. This investment includes $149.8 million in IBIT, $105.5 million in FBTC, $69.5 million in GBTC, and $52.3 million in BITB.

Additionally, New York investment manager, Fortress Investment Group LLC, disclosed a $53.6 million investment in IBIT, adding to the growing list of institutional players entering the crypto space.

What to know 

  • Morgan Stanley with its recent investment revelation joins several Global Systemically Important Banks (G-SIBs) that have publicly disclosed investments in spot Bitcoin ETFs. Other banks investing in the ETFs include the Royal Bank of Canada, JP Morgan Chase, Wells Fargo, BNP Paribas, and UBS.
  • Spot Bitcoin ETF is an exchange-traded fund that tracks the spot, or current price of bitcoin. By holding an equivalent amount of bitcoin to back every share of the ETF that is sold, the fund is backed by bitcoin itself.

NewsTimes.Africa.

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