BlackRock's Ethereum Tokenized Fund ‘Brings Legitimacy’: Bernstein

Wall Street titan BlackRock’s move into crypto is good news for both worlds, analysts at global investment firm AllianceBernstein said.

BlackRock, the world’s biggest fund manager, last week announced its first tokenized fund. Its USD Institutional Digital Liquidity Fund runs on Ethereum, the blockchain behind the second biggest cryptocurrency by market cap, ETH. 

And BlackRock’s latest move “brings legitimacy” to Ethereum, a Tuesday report authored by Bernstein’s Gautam Chhugani and Mahika Sapra read. 

This is because Ethereum and other blockchains have been “so far only seen as retail casinos,” the note said. “The plumbing built for retail speculation starts to drive institutional utility.”

The report further said that BlackRock’s move would encourage “more traditional institutional customers to adopt on-chain funds.”

BlackRock wants to offer its clients assets tokenized on Ethereum’s blockchain and allow them to earn yield through holding tokens on the network. 

The finance giant’s CEO Larry Fink has previously spoken about the future of digital assets; BlackRock is currently hoping to get approval for a spot ETH exchange-traded fund (ETF) which is one of the “stepping stones towards tokenization,” he has said

BlackRock last year sent shockwaves through the crypto world when it filed an application with the Securities and Exchange Commission to launch a spot Bitcoin ETF. That ETF was approved in January and has since been a roaring success

Now, the firm wants to drop an ETH product for its customers, allowing them to get exposure to ETH—which has a market cap of $427 billion—via a fund that trades on a stock exchange. 

A number of other major fund managers—such as Fidelity and Grayscale—are also hoping to get approval from the SEC for a spot ETH ETF but the regulator has so far delayed giving a decision on the proposed product.

Edited by Ryan Ozawa.

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