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Swiss-Owned Bank UBS Discloses Major Investment in iShares Bitcoin Trust


UBS Group AG, which is a Switzerland-based global investment bank and financial services firm, revealed a large holding in the iShares Bitcoin Trust (IBIT) in its latest 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

The quarterly filing for the first quarter of 2024 shows that UBS, with its subsidiaries and institutional investment managers, owns 3,600 shares of IBIT. As of March 31, 2024, the holding was valued at $145,692.  However, it has a current value of about $124,488. 

About iShares Bitcoin Trust

The iShares Bitcoin Trust (IBIT) is a fund that is traded on the stock exchange (ETF) and is managed by BlackRock Inc. It gives investors the opportunity to invest in Bitcoin, the leading cryptocurrency in the world. IBIT also enables investors to trade Bitcoin within a regular brokerage account, which is way more user-friendly and accessible than the process of holding Bitcoin directly. As of May 10, IBIT had net assets of $16. 6 billion and a net expense ratio of 0.12%. 

The interaction of UBS with BlackRock Inc. is worth mentioning because BlackRock is one of UBS’s institutional shareholders, and it has about 5.01% of its total share capital.

UBS’s investment in IBIT is expressed through different parts such as Global Wealth Management, Personal and Corporate Banking, Asset Management, and Investment Bank, which show that UBS is interested in the crypto market. 

The details of the regulatory filing

As per the regulatory filing, UBS possesses 3,600 shares of BlackRock’s iShares Bitcoin Trust (IBIT). At the beginning of 2024, UBS permitted some of its customers to trade Bitcoin ETFs, but accounts with lower risk tolerance were not allowed to access these funds. 

UBS is also not supposed to solicit Bitcoin ETF traders. In late 2023, UBS permitted some affluent clients to gain exposure to cryptocurrency ETFs based in Hong Kong. UBS also appeared on the list of authorized participants for BlackRock’s IBIT alongside Citadel and Goldman Sachs in April. 

Other bodies have been attracted to Bitcoin ETFs. Edmond de Rothschild (Suisse) S.A., a part of the Edmond de Rothschild Group, bought $4.2 million on May 9. Also, JPMorgan Chase, a top US bank by assets under management,  revealed its Bitcoin ETF holdings.

Susquehanna International Group (SIG), the trading firm that was co-founded by the billionaire Jeff Yass, is also involved with Bitcoin ETFs.  Robert Mitchnick of BlackRock recently stated that the big institutions are now looking into Bitcoin, which means that the cryptocurrency sector is now getting the attention of established financial entities. 

Source: Cryptopolitan

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