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BlackRock CEO Larry Fink & “Godfather of ETFs” Reggie Browne Not Sure About Crypto ETFs?

ETFs in present times have become a preferred method of investing by everyday citizens trusting a fund manager (in this case an ETF manager) and without exposure to riskier tools like futures & options. In the aftermath of the 2008 Global Financial Crisis where complicated financial products like (mortgage backed) Collateralized Debt Obligation (CDO) defaulted in unexpected manner, simpler investment products enjoyed new found popularity. Now, Reggie Browne, one of the two most influential personalities (other being Arlene Rockefeller) for Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) expressed his view on potential regulatory approval of crypto ETFs. Popularly known as ‘The Godfather of ETFs’, he stated the current state of BTC ETFs in his speech at Georgetown University’s Financial Markets Quality Conference in Washington D.C. (1):

“It’s very difficult for the SEC [Securities and Exchange Commission] to wrap their heads around a positive approval because there’s no data yet … the markets just aren’t here.”

6.8 trillion dollars worth asset manager giant BlackRock’s CEO Larry Fink also made a statement along similar lines:

“I wouldn’t say never, when it’s legitimate, yes.”

Larry Fink has always been bullish on the underlying blockchain technology, but citing problems with present day cryptocurrencies, short terms prospect for approval of a Bitcoin or a crypto ETF are always a doubt. As per him, the inability for governments to track transactions and curtail problems like wealth hiding, tax evasion and other malpractices will always make crypto ETF approval challenging (2). Larry adds:

“I do see one day where we could have electronic trading for a currency that could be a store of wealth. But right now the world doesn’t need a store of wealth unless you need that store of wealth for things you should not be doing,”

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