Morgan Stanley has increased its Bitcoin exposure by over $300 million after adding another 1.5 million shares of the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC), and the warming up toward crypto assets is giving way to speculation Morgan Stanley could also push for a Bitcoin ETF.
Bitcoin Isn’t a Fad, Isn’t Going Away
The New York-based banking giant disclosed this big increase in BTC holdings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in its latest filings.
A Twitter account, Macroscope, revealed the SEC filings through a series of tweets. It is reported that Morgan Stanley’s growth portfolio grew by 71%, from 2,130,153 GBTC shares at the end of Q2 to 3,642,118 GBTC shares at the end of Q3 2021.
Similarly, the amount of BTC in the multinational’s opportunity portfolio grew by 59% from 919,805 GBTC shares to 1,463,714.
During this period, the firm added over 600,000 shares to the Morgan Stanley Insight Fund.
The revelation comes soon after CEO James Gorman’s remarks saying his bank wasn’t seeing much client demand in Bitcoin. Morgan said in October:
“I don’t think crypto’s a fad, I don’t think it’s going away […] I don’t know what the value of Bitcoin should or shouldn’t be, but these things aren’t going away.”
ETF to “Physically” Hold Bitcoin
Morgan Stanley doesn’t trade cryptocurrencies directly for its retail clients, but it offers investors different avenues to buy digital currencies through various funds.
Cryptocurrencies and especially Bitcoin have enjoyed a wild ride in 2021. For Naysayers who thought it was a fad, Bitcoin has surpassed stocks and commodities to become the best performing asset of the year.
The ongoing 2021 Bull Run saw GBTC grow its asset volume from $5.4 billion to almost $40 billion. Grayscale Investments LLC is awaiting the SEC’s approval to convert GBTC into an ETF that would “physically” hold Bitcoin.
The anticipation has created an adrenaline rush following the strong demand for ProShares Bitcoin Strategy ETF, the first U.S. Bitcoin futures ETF that opened on Oct. 19 with more than $900 million worth of shares changing hands on its first day.
There’s now every chance that Morgan Stanley could push for a Bitcoin ETF so its investors can get the opportunity to invest in Bitcoin without having to learn about digital wallets and cryptocurrency exchanges.
This content is for informational purposes only and is not investment advice. You should consult a qualified licensed advisor before engaging in any transaction.