The first Bitcoin ETF in Latin America made its debut yesterday on the Brazil Stock Exchange. Presented by QR Capital, a Brazilian blockchain investment firm, the ETF seeks to simplify Bitcoin exposure for institutions and companies. The ETF was approved by Brazilian regulators and is currently trading with the QBTC11 ticker.
Bitcoin ETF Makes It in Brazil
The first Bitcoin ETF initiative in Latam is already listed on the Brazilian stock exchange. Conceived by QR Capital, a blockchain investment firm and asset manager, its objective is to simplify Bitcoin access for institutions. This Bitcoin ETF product got its approval last March from the Brazil Securities and Exchange Commission.
According to QR Capital CEO Fernando Carvalho, their product is pioneering how companies approach cryptocurrency investments in Brazil. Carvalho stated:
We can see the market maturing in its search for safer and simpler bitcoin exposure options. Our bitcoin ETF is a landmark for both financial and crypto markets, once it is the convergence point between them. The Brazilian investor has now a regulated and robust choice to buy bitcoin.
While other Bitcoin-based ETFs were launched in Canada, this offering is unique in Latam. The product had a good starting session, with bitcoin prices recovering 7% during initial trading hours. QR’s Bitcoin ETF also features a relatively low administration fee of 0.75% annually, intended to entice small investors into entering the cryptocurrency investment world in regulated fashion.
US Lags Behind
Canada and Brazil are already trading Bitcoin ETFs in their markets. But similar filings in the US haven’t had the same luck. The SEC (Securities and Exchange Commission) has repeatedly denied filing after filing from different companies offering similar products. There are currently more than 7 filings from different companies seeking to offer this solution in the US stock market, and two for Ethereum-based variations.
The SEC has given several reasons for not greenlighting these proposals. Unregulated markets prone to manipulation and price volatility are a couple. However, Microstrategy and Grayscale have stepped in as a kind of unofficial replacement for these instruments, bringing indirect exposure to the underlying assets.
In any case, if a Bitcoin ETF arrives in US markets soon, it could greatly simplify companies’ access to Bitcoin. There are still major hurdles to overcome for institutions wishing to invest in crypto. An ETF would be a major solution for managers that don’t want to complicate things with custody liabilities and want to be protected by current market laws.