BNP Paribas buys BlackRock’s spot Bitcoin ETF shares

In this post:

  • BNP Paribas, Europe’s second-largest bank, purchased shares in BlackRock’s iShares Bitcoin Trust (IBIT), making a significant investment in the cryptocurrency market.
  • The purchase involved 1,030 shares at over $40 each, totaling $42,684, despite Bitcoin trading at over $58,000.
  • This acquisition is part of a trend where traditional financial institutions are increasingly investing in digital assets.

BNP Paribas, Europe’s second-largest bank, recently made a big move in the cryptocurrency space by purchasing shares in BlackRock’s Spot Bitcoin ETF, iShares Bitcoin Trust (IBIT). This purchase, as detailed in a 13F filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on May 1st, saw the bank acquire 1,030 IBIT shares at over $40 per share, totaling $42,684.

Market Moves

While this price per share seems small compared to Bitcoin’s trading price of over $58,000, it is a major investment by BNP Paribas into the cryptocurrency market, particularly into a fund that has quickly become the most successful of the newly approved Spot Bitcoin ETFs in the United States. With this purchase, BNP Paribas is tapping into the success of BlackRock’s IBIT, a fund that leads with $17.24 billion in assets under management despite recent market fluctuations.

This acquisition not only marks BNP Paribas as the first major financial institution to get into such a venture but also demonstrates a growing institutional interest in Bitcoin and related investment offerings. The filing reveals that the transaction was part of a broader trend where major traditional financial players begin to engage more deeply with digital assets.

Challenges in the Crypto Market

However, the cryptocurrency market has seen a lot of volatility. Recent data from CoinGlass indicates that all 10 U.S. spot Bitcoin ETFs experienced outflows for the first time this Wednesday, marking the most substantial loss since these funds began trading in January. Over the last four weeks, these funds have seen about $6 billion wiped off their books, a reduction of around 20% in assets under management.

Source: Nasdaq

BlackRock’s IBIT saw $36.9 million in outflows, its first such event since inception. The other major funds, Fidelity’s FBTC and Grayscale’s GBTC, reported losses of $191.1 million and $167.4 million, respectively. This downturn coincides with Bitcoin’s price correction; after a 65% rise to a peak of $73,000 in March, the price has dropped nearly 20%, now hovering around $59,000.

Eric Balchunas, Bloomberg’s senior ETF analyst, provided insights into the situation, noting that while the recent outflows might seem alarming, they align with the typical ebb and flow expected in the early stages of ETFs. He pointed out that despite the market’s downturn, many investors still hold their positions, betting long-term on the asset’s value.

The underlying volatility of Bitcoin, much like the recent price corrections influenced by various economic factors—including Federal Reserve policies and the aftermath of Bitcoin halving—remains a crucial reminder to investors about the inherent risks and opportunities in cryptocurrency investments.

Moreover, while the market faces these challenges, the broader acceptance and growth of Bitcoin ETFs could be hampered by regulatory delays. For example, despite filings by major exchanges like Nasdaq, CBOE, and NYSE Arca to the SEC for trading related ETF options, there has been little progress.

Balchunas likened the situation to putting a band’s music on Spotify as opposed to selling vinyl records — more audience might be reachable, but the core product must stand strong on its own merits.

DisclaimerThe information provided is not trading advice. Cryptopolitan.com holds no liability for any investments made based on the information provided on this page. We strongly recommend independent research and/or consultation with a qualified professional before making any investment decision.

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