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Merrill and Wells Fargo are taking Bitcoin ETFs even more mainstream

Lloyd Lee   

Merrill and Wells Fargo are taking Bitcoin ETFs even more mainstream
  • Wells Fargo and Bank of America's Merill will be offering bitcoin ETFs to clients, per Bloomberg.
  • Bitcoin ETFs recently saw record-high trading volumes as the cryptocurrency's price surged.

Bitcoin ETFs are breaking through the mainstream as some of the largest investment firms start to offer the funds to their clients.

Bank of America's Merrill and Wells Fargo are starting to offer some of their wealth management clients spot bitcoin exchange-traded funds that were recently approved by the SEC in January, sources familiar with the matter told Bloomberg.

"Spot bitcoin ETFs are available for unsolicited purchases through an advisor with Wells Fargo Advisors or through our online WellsTrade platform," Sarah Kerr, a Wells Fargo spokesperson, confirmed to Business Insider.

A spokesperson for Merrill did not immediately return Business Insider's request for comment.

Morgan Stanley also has been doing due diligence to offer bitcoin ETF products, Coindesk reported earlier on Wednesday.

The acceptance of bitcoin ETFs by mainstream brokerage platforms reflects how large firms are increasingly looking at cryptocurrency as legitimate, accessible investment opportunities rather than mere speculative assets.

With bitcoin ETFs, retail investors can get exposure to the cryptocurrency's price movements without having to directly buy bitcoin through a less regulated exchange.

In the weeks since US regulators approved 11 spot bitcoin ETFs in January, the investment vehicles saw record-high trading volumes. On Wednesday, 10 ETFs reached $7.69 billion in trading volume, Bloomberg's James Seyffart said on X.

Bitcoin's price also has seen a recent resurgence, briefly breaking $63,000 on Wednesday — just shy of its all-time high of nearly $69,000 in 2021.

But not all mainstream brokerages are sold on crypto.

Following the announcement of bitcoin ETFs' SEC approval, Vanguard said in a January statement that it would not yet offer the products on its platform.

"In Vanguard's view, crypto is more of a speculation than an investment," Janel Jackson, Vanguard's global head of ETF capital markets, said in the January 24 press release. "This is at the root of our decision to not offer crypto products, whether our own or others."

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