An SEC filing on Friday indicates that the next Wall Street institution to take a public position in Bitcoin may also be among the largest yet: the $275 billion financial services firm Guggenheim Partners.
The Guggenheim filing allows the Macro Opportunities fund to purchase GBTC, a publicly-traded Bitcoin investment vehicle from Grayscale, at an indeterminate point in the future.
“The Guggenheim Macro Opportunities Fund may seek investment exposure to bitcoin indirectly through investing up to 10% of its net asset value in Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (“GBTC”),” the filing reads.
According to independent ratings firm Morningstar, the Guggenheim Macro Opportunities fund currently has $5.3 billion in assets under management and sports a four-star rating “based on risk-adjusted returns out of 270 Nontraditional Bond funds.”
Guggenheim describes the overall fund strategy for the institutional-grade shares (ticker: GIOIX) as a product of the investment team’s “highest-conviction ideas.” If the fund were to take the full 10% stake in GBTC, it would be worth north of $500 million.
The filing also notes a long list of potential investor risks associated with cryptocurrencies, which it refers to as “digital assets designed to act as a medium of exchange.” Risks include lack of cryptocurrency exchange regulation, GBTC’s historical “significant premium” to net asset value, and uncertainty regarding tax laws and regulations, among others.
This preparatory move by Guggenheim appears to be part of a cascading series of investments indicating increased acceptance of Bitcoin among major financial institutions. In August, business intelligence firm Microstrategy purchased nearly 40,000 Bitcoin, leading to a parabolic move in share price. Likewise, financial services firm Square, Inc bought $50 million in Bitcoin in October.
This rolling snowball of institution interest may quickly become an avalanche, as noted by one prominent voice in crypto journalism:
2016: The institutions are coming!
2017: The institutions are coming!
2018: The institutions are coming!
2019: The institutions are coming!
2020: The institutions are here!
2021: Dammit, the institutions bought all the #Bitcoin
— Jon Rice (@JonRiceCrypto) October 17, 2020