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Financial Headlines: Bitcoin Bull Market Expected to Return

This article was first published on: 頭條金融報(headlinefinance)

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BlackRock has filed an application with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for a spot Bitcoin trust, so what are the similarities and differences compared to the existing Grayscale trust, GBTC?


The most important difference between BlackRock Bitcoin ETF and Grayscale Bitcoin Trust is the redemption mechanism. Technically, the BlackRock proposal is a trust, but unlike GBTC, it allows for redemptions, making it functionally similar to an ETF; GBTC, on the other hand, locks up positions until maturity, with no redemption mechanism in between. This means that while investors can buy GBTC shares, they cannot redeem them for the underlying Bitcoin. Due to the lack of a redemption mechanism, GBTC stock trades at a significant discount or premium to the actual value of the Bitcoin spot.


BlackRock's proposed product has the ability to track the spot price of Bitcoin more closely and accurately than GBTC. A spot Bitcoin ETF can buy Bitcoin at the end of the trading day, aligning the fund with the trading price of Bitcoin assets, thus enabling the ETF to track the spot price of Bitcoin more accurately. In contrast, the illiquidity of GBTC's lock-up mechanism means that it trades at a significant premium or discount to the value of its underlying assets; for example, after entering a bear market in 2022, GBTC has consistently traded at around 40% below its net asset value.


While both BlackRock and the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust provide investors with exposure to Bitcoin, they do so in fundamentally different ways. The key difference is the redemption mechanism, which allows the ETFs to more accurately track the spot price of Bitcoin. The launch of Bitcoin ETFs could have a major impact as institutions prepare for the next Bitcoin bull market. BlackRock's reputation as the world's largest fund manager, with $9.1 trillion in assets under management, lends credibility to its Bitcoin ETF. More organizations have already followed similar proposals for Bitcoin cash, which, if approved by regulators, could trigger the next bull market.


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