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Crypto Optimistic BlackRock Edges Closer to Bitcoin ETF Despite Increased SEC Scrutiny of the Indust

Despite Bitcoin (CRYPTO: BTC) languishing below the $25K mark and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) intensifying its crackdown on the crypto industry, BlackRock Inc (NYSE: BLK), the world's largest asset manager, is reportedly nearing an application for a Bitcoin ETF (exchange-traded fund) according to Coindesk.

This development comes amidst the company's increasing exposure to Bitcoin through its 8.10% stake in MicroStrategy Inc. (NASDAQ: MSTR) earlier this year.

BlackRock's Bitcoin Strategy

BlackRock has been significantly increasing its exposure to Bitcoin indirectly via MicroStrategy, the largest corporate holder of Bitcoin. According to reports, BlackRock is among the top five shareholders in MicroStrategy, which acts as a reliable proxy for firms hesitant or unable to buy Bitcoin directly. With 757,146 shares in MicroStrategy, BlackRock's exposure to Bitcoin is becoming increasingly prominent.

Bitcoin ETF on the Horizon

BlackRock is now preparing to delve deeper into the crypto realm by filing an application for a Bitcoin ETF. According to insider information, BlackRock will use Coinbase Custody for the ETF and the crypto exchange's spot market data for pricing.

This move to make crypto more accessible to institutional investors exemplifies BlackRock's bullish stance on Bitcoin, despite the cryptocurrency's current underperformance.

The positive move from BlackRock comes amidst a turbulent period for the crypto industry, with the SEC stepping up its actions against major crypto players. Binance (CRYPTO: BNB) and Coinbase Global Inc (NASDAQ: COIN) are currently facing lawsuits from the SEC, highlighting the need for a comprehensive framework for regulating the crypto industry. This intensified scrutiny is adding to the current downward pressure on Bitcoin's price.

© 2023 Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.

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