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Cryptogambling / BlackRock CEO sees Bitcoin ETFs as step toward tokenization of financial market

BlackRock CEO sees Bitcoin ETFs as step toward tokenization of financial market

Publish Date: 15/01/2024
Video: BlackRock CEO Larry Fink: Bitcoin ETF approvals are 'stepping stones' towards tokenization

BlackRock CEO Larry Fink: Bitcoin ETF approvals are ‘stepping stones’ towards tokenization

The recent mass approval of Bitcoin exchange-traded funds (ETFs) signals the start of a technological revolution toward tokenization in the financial market, according to BlackRock CEO Larry Fink.

He shared this perspective on a recent episode of CNBC’s “Squawk Box,” saying, “ETFs are step one in the technological revolution in the financial markets. Step two is going to be the tokenization of every financial asset.”

Fink pointed out that although ETFs are seen as a method to expose investors to a risky asset class like Bitcoin, the significance of blockchain technology goes beyond just Bitcoin.

Bitcoin and crypto’s blockchain technology enables the tokenization of traditional assets on a public ledger. This has the potential to simplify and reduce the cost of transferring various assets, including stocks, bonds, real estate and alternative investments like art.

“We have the technology to tokenize today,” Fink said. “If you had a tokenized security … the moment you buy or sell an instrument, it’s known it’s on a general ledger that is all created together. This eliminates all corruption, having a tokenized system.”

He continued to explain that Bitcoin, Ethereum (ETH) and crypto asset classes similar to gold, serve as a haven during difficult times and shield holders from geopolitical volatility.

“It’s no different than what gold represented over thousands of years. It is an asset class that protects you,” Fink said.

In another interview with Fox Business, Fink clarified that Bitcoin ETFs would help legitimize an industry that has been facing skepticism since its beginning.

“The advent of the Bitcoin ETF is an example that we’re legitimizing it; we’re creating more safety,” he said.

Fink sees value in ETH ETF

In the same episode of CNBC’s Squawk Box, Fink discussed his interest in an ETH ETF.

“I see value in having an Ethereum ETF,” Fink said.

BlackRock applied for an ETH ETF with the SEC in November. Other major asset managers, including Van Eck, Ark Invest & 21Shares, Fidelity and Galaxy Research, have also submitted applications for ETH ETFs. Van Eck is anticipated to receive a response from the SEC first, with a deadline set for May 23, while BlackRock’s deadline is in early August.

Traders are anticipating the approval of spot ETFs for other cryptocurrencies after the recent approval of a spot Bitcoin ETF. Over 58 percent of bets on Polymarket predict the approval of an Ethereum ETF by the end of May.

Ethereum has had a promising start this year, surging 13 percent in the last two weeks, while Bitcoin increased by 3.7 percent during the same period. According to Coingecko, ETH is currently trading at $2,967.

BlackRock launches first Bitcoin ETF advertisement

On January 11, BlackRock unveiled its first video ad for the recently launched iShares Bitcoin Trust ETF (IBIT).

In the nearly two-minute video, Jay Jacobs, BlackRock’s U.S. head of thematic and alternative ETFs, discusses the value of Bitcoin and how investors can access it through the new ETF. He emphasizes that IBIT is easily accessible, removes operational burdens and benefits from BlackRock’s expertise in the ETF.

Bloomberg ETF analyst Eric Balchunas observed that BlackRock ETF ads are well-suited for the boomer demographic.

“This is how you market to rich boomers, folks. The calm disposition, easy to understand inv case, soft new age music, suit with no tie.. everything about it says “it’s ok now, the adults are here,”” Balchunas said.

Fourth Turning Investments founder Chris Dark described the ad as “so boring it’s brilliant” due to its effective targeting of boomers.

“My god this is a great Boomer ad for Blackrock BTC ETF. Absolutely everything that will drive BTC maxis insane,” said Dark.

Digital asset investor Fred Krueger also believes that the ad is more appealing to “wealthy boomers.”

“My generation of wealthy boomers doesn’t particularly like tattoo-covered Gen-x ers telling them that the entire financial system needs to be scrapped. But they’re happy now that they can invest in Bitcoin via traditional finance firms,” said Kruger.

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