BlackRock iShares Exec Says Firm Has ‘No Current Plans’ to Launch Crypto ETFs: Report

BlackRock iShares executive Salim Ramji said the asset manager is holding back in launching crypto ETFs due to “opaque” regulatory framework and liquidity concerns.

Nov 12, 2021 at 1:46 p.m. UTC
Updated Nov 12, 2021 at 3:13 p.m. UTC

BlackRock global head of iShares and index investments Salim Ramji, said in an interview the $9.5 trillion firm has “no current plans” to launch cryptocurrency exchange-traded funds (ETF).

  • “I personally think crypto – things like stablecoins and certainly things like distributed ledger technologies – are a disruptive technology,” Ramji told the Financial News in an interview.
  • However, Ramji, who sits on BlackRock’s global executive committee, also said the asset manager is holding back on launching cryptocurrency ETFs due to the “opaque” regulatory framework and liquidity concerns.
  • In May, BlackRock CEO Larry Fink said the asset manager is studying the potential of cryptocurrencies to serve as long-term investments though it’s too early to tell if they’re “just a speculative trading tool” due to their volatility.
  • In October, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) approved the first bitcoin futures ETF, the ProShares Bitcoin Strategy ETF (BITO), which is listed on the New York Stock Exchange.
  • “I also think that before we wrap or put our brand on it, we want to be certain that clients are going to be happy with us five years from now, 10 years from now,” Ramji told the publication.

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Tanzeel Akhtar is a CoinDesk news reporter based in Europe.