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Spot Bitcoin ETF debut: Trading volume reaches $4.6B

Spot Bitcoin ETF trading volume reached over $4.6 billion in U.S. Exchanges on Thursday, the first day the products were allowed to be traded.

BlackRock, Grayscale and Fidelity led the early afternoon trading, contributing 87 percent of the total trading volume. Grayscale’s GBTC dominated the competition with a trading volume of $2.3 billion. BlackRock’s iShares Bitcoin Trust recorded more than $1 billion in trading volume, followed by the FIdelity Wise Origin Bitcoin Fund, which reached $712 million.

In response to the debut of the asset class, Galaxy Investment Partners CEO Michael Novogratz said the stage would be dominated by BlackRock, Fidelity and Invesco despite the early activity being centralized around GBTC. Likewise, Bloomberg analyst James Seyffart said GBTC’s dominance might be a temporary trend due to GBTC holders divesting their positions in favor of alternative options.

Alongside this trading activity, Bitcoin gained one percent, nearing the $45,000 mark, on Thursday morning. It had previously reached $49,000 before plummeting again. CoinGecko reported the Bitcoin 24-hour trading volume reached $55 billion. On the other hand, Ether, the second largest crypto asset, rose by seven percent to around $2,600.

While clients of firms such as Fidelity and Charles Schwab (SCHW) brokers have access to spot Bitcoin ETFs, some large financial companies still limit their customers’ access to this new product, including Vanguard and UBS.

“While we continuously evaluate our brokerage offer and new product entries to the market, spot Bitcoin ETFs will not be available for purchase on the Vanguard platform,” said a Vanguard spokesperson.

The company will not offer a Vanguard Bitcoin ETF or other crypto-related products in the future, believing these products are not suitable with their asset class offerings. Vanguard views its asset classes as the building blocks of a well-balanced long-term investment portfolio, including equities, bonds and cash.

Meanwhile, a UBS source said the company has allowed its clients to access most of the spot Bitcoin ETFs available. The company has set requirements to allow clients to trade spot Bitcoin ETFs.

Crypto stocks fluctuate

Crypto-related stocks initially increased higher on Thursday but ended the day with a decrease. Bitcoin miners Riot Platforms and Marathon Digital declined by 15.8 percent and 12.6 percent, respectively. Additionally, Iris Energy fell six percent, Bitfarms declined by 13.3 percent and CleanSpark lost seven percent.

Bitcoin investor MicroStrategy stocks decreased by 5.2 percent, followed by crypto exchange Coinbase fell by 6.7 percent. Coinbase closed at around $141 per share, wiping out its gains that had amounted to more than 250 percent over the past 12 months. On the contrary, ProShares Bitcoin Strategy ETF gained 0.44 percent.

In 2023, miners were some of the biggest gainers in the stock market, with Marathon Digital finishing higher by almost 590 percent while Riot Platforms increased by over 350 percent. Additionally, CleanSpark and Iris Energy closed more than 400 percent higher that year.

However, Miners’ revenues have fallen in recent weeks as Bitcoin transaction fees have decreased, as reported by CryptoQuant. Grayscale charges their investors a 1.5 percent fee while other asset managers charge fees ranging from 0.2 to 0.9 percent.

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