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Major Banks JP Morgan and Wells Fargo Reveal Bitcoin ETF Investments

Banking giants embrace Bitcoin ETFs

JP Morgan and Wells Fargo disclose their investments in Bitcoin ETFs, highlighting the expanding interest of traditional banks in cryptocurrency assets.

Key takeaways:

  • JP Morgan and Wells Fargo have invested in Bitcoin ETFs, with JP Morgan allocating funds across multiple ETFs including BlackRock’s IBIT.
  • BlackRock has also invested significantly in its own IBIT fund, showcasing a trend where issuers invest in their own Bitcoin ETFs.

JP Morgan and Wells Fargo are the latest significant financial institutions to reveal their Bitcoin exposures through recent ETF launches. These disclosures were made in their 13F filings on May 10, showcasing modest investments in several Bitcoin ETFs.

JP Morgan reported a total investment of $731,246 spread across several funds: BlackRock’s IBIT, Bitwise’s BITB, Fidelity’s FBTC, and Grayscale’s GBTC, with the largest portion, $477,425, allocated to IBIT. Meanwhile, Wells Fargo disclosed a $141,817 investment in Grayscale’s GBTC for the first quarter.

These disclosures come as part of a broader trend, with other major banks like BNP Paribas and BNY Mellon also reporting investments in Bitcoin ETFs. This growing interest among traditional financial institutions in Bitcoin is still at a cautious level, given the modest amounts invested.

Additionally, banks such as Morgan Stanley and UBS have shown interest in offering clients access to spot Bitcoin ETFs, although they have not yet reported direct exposures.

BlackRock leads with rapid AUM growth in Bitcoin ETFs

BlackRock, another major player, revealed in its own 13F filing a $6.6 million investment in its IBIT fund. BlackRock, along with other ETF issuers like Ark Invest and Van Eck, have also invested in their funds, with Ark Invest holding $206.4 million in its ARKB fund, and Van Eck $98,000 in its HODL fund.

BlackRock’s IBIT has performed notably well, achieving the fastest growth to $10 billion in assets under management (AUM) in the history of ETFs, a milestone reached in just 49 trading days. Bloomberg ETF analyst Eric Balchunas highlighted this achievement, noting the unprecedented speed compared to the previous record of 647 trading days by JEPQ.

The entry of traditional finance (TradFi) into Bitcoin ETFs is further evidenced by a $27.7 million investment in IBIT by Chicago-based hedge fund CTC Alternative Strategies on May 9. Numerous other financial firms, including Hightower Advisors, US Bancorp, SouthState, Susquehanna International Group, Burkett Financial Services, and Legacy Wealth Asset Management, have also made investments in spot Bitcoin ETFs.

Data from Fintel indicates that over 240 firms have invested in IBIT, more than 130 in FBTC, and over 467 in Grayscale’s GBTC since the inception of spot Bitcoin ETFs in January. This trend underscores the increasing acceptance of Bitcoin as an investment asset among traditional financial institutions.