Updated 08 Apr, 2021

BlackRock Has Held Bitcoin Futures Contracts, SEC Filing Shows

BlackRock Has Held Bitcoin Futures Contracts, SEC Filing Shows



Key Takeaways

  • Bitcoin futures present on latest BlackRock portfolio report
  • The investment firm has held investments of a little over $6mn in bitcoin futures

BlackRock Enters the Bitcoin Space

According to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) submitted on Mar 31, BlackRock, the world’s largest asset manager, has begun trading Bitcoin futures. Earlier this year, as the statement confirms, BlackRock held $6.5mn in Bitcoin futures. This was provided by the CME Group, the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. The 37 futures contracts held by the firm expired on Mar 26. They were worth $6.15mn at the time of purchase and had appreciated by $360,458.

The asset manager used its Global Allocation Fund to hold the bitcoin futures. Which represented 0.03% of its assets under management, while the gains realized represented just 0.0014%. Given the small amount of the investment, BlackRock’s dabbling in bitcoin could be interpreted as a test as this is the first even bitcoin-related investment for the asset manager. By the end of 2020, the investment giant held $8.67tn in assets under management.

Growing Interest from Investment Firms

In mid-February, BlackRock’s Rick Rieder appeared on CNBC where he mentioned that the firm has entered the bitcoin space. At the time, the information about their bitcoin futures holdings was not yet available, but according to the prospectus documents filed in January, BlackRock has stated it “may invest in cash-settled bitcoin futures traded on commodity exchanges registered with the CFTC.”

There is a growing interest by investment firms to trade bitcoin futures as the most accessible bitcoin-related product in mainstream finance. Presently, no bank has allowed access to direct bitcoin investments due to regulatory compliance. As a result of the rising demand, CME reports over 100% growth of open interest in bitcoin futures for the last eight months. Open interest in bitcoin futures represents the total value of all bitcoin futures contracts trading on all official exchanges at any given time.