First Mover Americas: Demand for Bitcoin Futures ETF BITO Ramps Up

The latest price moves in crypto markets in context for Nov. 30, 2023.

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This article originally appeared in First Mover, CoinDesk’s daily newsletter putting the latest moves in crypto markets in context. Subscribe to get it in your inbox every day.

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ProShares’ Bitcoin Strategy ETF (BITO) – a bitcoin futures fund offered in the U.S. – hit a high of $1.47 billion in assets under management this week, surging past a record set in December 2021. The increase indicates renewed institutional demand for bitcoin (BTC) as a flurry of bitcoin spot exchange-traded fund (ETF) applications were filed in the U.S. BITO, listed on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME), allows investors to gain exposure to bitcoin-linked returns through a regulated product. “Investor demand for BITO remains strong, as shown by the ETF reaching a new high in assets under management,” Simeon Hyman, global investment strategist at ProShares, said in a statement to CoinDesk. “We believe this speaks to the demand for a familiar, accessible and regulated way to target the returns of bitcoin.”

Grayscale, the manager of the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC), is updating the trust’s agreement for the first time since 2018, according to a Wednesday filing. The aim is to optimize GBTC’s structure for an anticipated change to a spot bitcoin ETF and level the playing field when it comes to other applicants including asset-management giant BlackRock. The update, which will be put out for a shareholder vote, involves two proposed modifications to the trust agreement. The first allows fees, which had been collected by Grayscale on a monthly basis, to be payable daily. This is a structural tweak and not part of a fee reduction – something Grayscale has committed to, but which has not been finalized – a company spokeswoman said.

Cathie Wood's investment management firm ARK Invest sold a further $5 million worth of Coinbase (COIN) stock on Wednesday while buying $2 million of shares in trading platform Robinhood (HOOD) and $1.5 million of online bank SoFi Technologies (SOFI). The sale of 38,668 COIN shares from the Ark Fintech Innovation ETF (ARKF) follows the offload of 43,956 shares on Monday. COIN was largely static on Wednesday, closing down 0.35% at $127.82. The HOOD purchase was ARK's seventh of the month, and coincides with Robinhood starting to offer stocks trading in the U.K., its third attempt at international expansion. ARK has spent some $13.5 million on Robinhood this month, based on closing prices. The shares rose 3.24% to $8.92 on Wednesday.

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Edited by Sheldon Reback.

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Lyllah Ledesma

Lyllah Ledesma is a CoinDesk Markets reporter currently based in Europe. She holds bitcoin, ether and small amounts of other crypto assets.

Omkar Godbole

Omkar Godbole is a Co-Managing Editor on CoinDesk's Markets team.


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