Bitcoin ETFs in June 2024

Explore the latest news on Bitcoin ETFs, comparing fees and assets under management (AUM) to help you decide if they're right for you and, if so, which is the best Bitcoin ETF for your investment portfolio
Published: January 22, 2024   |   Last Updated: February 8, 2024
Written By:
Matt Pearlstein

What is a Bitcoin ETF?

A Bitcoin ETF is a type of exchange-traded fund that allows investors to gain exposure to Bitcoin’s price movements without owning the cryptocurrency directly. Instead, these ETFs invest in assets or companies that reflect Bitcoin’s value and are traded on stock exchanges, enabling investors to access them through brokerage accounts.

What Is The Best Bitcoin ETF?

There are a few important considerations when choosing which Bitcoin ETF you want to purchase. The first thing to look at is each issuer’s annual management fee. The current ETF offerings range in fees from 0.21 – 1.5%, with ARK Invest as the cheapest and Grayscale as the highest.

In addition to fees, you want to look at the company backing the ETF. You may have brand loyalty to one issuer or trust one over another. If you are a diehard Bitcoiner, you may want to support Bitwise and VanEck, who are donating a portion of their ETF profits to Bitcoin core developers.

Lastly, you want to ensure that your ETF of choice sees regular trading volume and performs as it should. The safe bet may be to go with the the ETFs that have attracted the most AUM. As of the end of the first week of the ETFs trading, Fidelity, Bitwise and BlackRock were leading in inflows.

Latest Bitcoin ETF News

January 12 – 10:29AM

Bitwise saw the most inflows on the first day totaling ~$238M

The first day of Bitcoin spot ETF trading did not disappoint. In total, there were $721M of inflows across the 11 approved ETFs.

Bitwise took the lead with ~$238M on inflows, followed by Fidelity ($227M) and BlackRock ($112M).

January 12 – 12:00AM

Franklin Templeton becomes the issuer with the lowest fee on the second day of trading

After an underwhelming day of inflows for Franklin Templeton’s Bitcoin spot ETF, they have decided to lower their fee and add a fee waiver. They are now the issuer with the lowest fee across the market, sitting at 0.19%.

Additionally, they are attempting to gain investor interest but waiving all fees on the first $10B of fund inflows. This is something that other issuers like BlackRock have also done on a smaller scale.

January 11 – 4:08PM

Bitcoin ETFs see $4.5B of trading volume on their opening day

January 11th marked a historic day for Bitcoin, with 11 Bitcoin spot ETFs trading for the first time. These ETFs generated a huge buzz across the financial world, and also had a record opening day for ETF launches.

In total, there was $4.5B worth of volume traded across the ETFs. It is important to note that some of this volume was investors rotating out of Grayscale’s ETF due to its high fee.

More News Updates
January 11 – 12:40PM

Vanguard no longer allows their clients to purchase GBTC, or any of the Bitcoin spot ETFs

A few hours into the opening day of trading for Bitcoin spot ETFs, Vanguard announced that it will not be issuing its on ETF.

Shortly after, reports started to surface that Vanguard disabled buying of other issuers ETFs. At this time, Vanguard clients are only allowed to sell GBTC.

And it’s not just Vanguard. Clients from Citi, Edward Jones, UBS, Merrill Lynch and Wells Fargo Advisors are saying the same.

January 11 – 12:36PM

Bitcoin spot ETFs see half a Billion dollars in inflows in the first 20 minutes

Bitcoin spot ETFs drew a lot of interest off the jump, bringing in $500M of inflows in the first 20 minutes of trading. Importantly, this figure leaves out BITO, a non-spot Bitcoin ETF which has seen ~$1B in flows alone today.

These numbers put Bitcoin spot ETFs on track for the biggest ETF debut by inflows ever.

January 10 – 3:39PM

The SEC approves all Bitcoin spot ETFs at once

After 6 long months of re-filings and waiting, and 15 years after Bitcoin’s creation, the time has finally come!

On January 10, 2024, the SEC approved all Bitcoin spot ETFs at once.

January 10 – 11:19AM

The CBOE approved spot ETFs for listing, pending SEC approval

At 11am the CBOE approved several Bitcoin spot ETFs for listing on its exchange. Importantly, these filings still need to receive SEC approval before they go live.

The CBOE is the Chicago Boards Options Exchange, which provides options contracts on publicly traded companies, indices and ETFs. The decision from the SEC is coming later today.

January 10 – 6:23AM

BlackRock lowers their management fee again on the morning of the ETF decision deadline

Today marks the day that the SEC must make a decision on whether to approve Bitcoin spot ETFs or not. And leading up to this deadline, ETF issuers have been battling with each other through lowering management fees and adding waivers.

Well, this morning BlackRock added more fuel to the fire. Just a day after Bitwise decreased their management to be the lowest, BlackRock has decided to lower their fee as well. They’ve changed their annual fee from 0.3% to 0.25%. Additionally, the fee for the first $5B of deposits has also been lowered from 0.2% to 0.12%, the new lowest inception fee.

Bitcoin ETF List 2024

At this time, there are 11 approved spot Bitcoin ETFs. While each spot ETF’s goal is to track the price of Bitcoin, these ETFs will have a few differences:

  • Ticker: The 4-digit symbol that represents a publicly traded stock or index.
  • AUM: Assets under management tell you how big the Bitcoin ETF is.
  • Management Fee: The fee that the issuer charges annually for investing in the fund. This fee covers fund management, marketing, and other expenses and is automatically withdrawn from your brokerage account.
  • Sponsors: These are the companies backing the ETF, who handle the creation and redemption of all shares.
Issuing CompanyTickerAUMManagement FeeFee Waiver
21 Shares & ARKARKB$717M0.25%No fees for the first 6 months OR first $1B of inflows
BlackrockIBTC$3.3B0.25%0.12% for the first 6 months OR first $5B on inflows
Invesco & Galaxy DigitalBTCW$306M0.25%No fees for the first 6 months OR first $5B of inflows
BitwiseBITB$672M0.20%No fees for the first 6 months OR first $5B of inflows
Franklin TempletonEZBC$64M0.19%No fees for the first $10B of inflows

*Grayscale converted GBTC, an existing Bitcoin offering, into their spot ETF. As a result, they have a much higher AUM.

What are the Bitcoin ETF Fees?

When you invest in an ETF, you pay an annual fee to the ETF issuer to cover management, trading, and marketing costs. These fees are automatically deducted from your brokerage account.

Issuers previously engaged in a fee battle, attempting to establish themselves as a market leader in the Bitcoin ETF race. As a result, numerous applicants have lowered their fees in amendments, and others, such as BlackRock and Bitwise, have even waived fees for an initial period.

It is important to note that Grayscale maintains the highest fee by a wide margin. Since Grayscale is converting its existing Bitcoin Trust into an ETF, it already has a lot of assets in its fund. As a result, they are betting that their investors will remain loyal or ignore the higher fee, as switching to another ETF would cause a taxable event for them.

Here is how the filers’ management fees stand:

Issuing CompanyTickerAnnual FeeFee Waiver
BlackrockIBTC0.25%0.12% for the first 6 months OR first $5B on inflows
21 Shares & ARKARKB0.21%No fees for the first 6 months OR first $1B of inflows
BitwiseBITB0.20%No fees for the first 6 months OR first $5B of inflows
Invesco & Galaxy DigitalBTCO0.39%No fees for the first 6 months OR first $5B of inflows
Franklin TempletonEZBC0.19%No fees for the first $10B of inflows

What’s Unique About Bitcoin Spot ETFs?

All of this hype has been centered around spot ETFs, which provide investors with direct exposure to the current price of Bitcoin. However, there are other types of Bitcoin funds that are also available to investors.

BTC futures have been trading on the open market since 2021. And while they have the same goal of tracking the price of Bitcoin, they do so without providing direct exposure. Instead, these funds consist of assets related to Bitcoin, such as futures contracts and shares of companies exposed to the crypto industry.

When Were Bitcoin Spot ETFs First Approved?

The SEC approved Bitcoin spot ETFs for the first time on January 10, 2024. Going into the approval, there were 11 applicants, including standard ETF issuers like BlackRock and VanEck. While these institutions applied for ETFs at different times, the SEC approved them all at once to ensure a fair launch.

Selected Available Bitcoin Offerings

As we mentioned above, spot ETFs differ from futures ETFs for a few reasons. In addition to spot ETFs, the following futures ETFs are currently live and trading:

IssuerTickerAUMAvg. Daily VolumeAnnual Fee
Grayscale TrustGBTC$17B$4.7M2%

Note: There are others currently live for trading, but they are less popular, and we decided to leave them out as our focus is currently on Spot ETFs.

Why Would I Buy a Bitcoin ETF Over Bitcoin Itself?

Many people want to get exposure to the crypto industry, but have never bought a token before. And in a lot of ways, getting started with crypto can feel like learning a new language. As a result, there are a lot of investors who simply feel more comfortable owning assets in their brokerage account.

Additionally, brokerage accounts come with other benefits such as asset protection, easy tax reporting, and low fees. Utilizing these accounts is a lot simpler than getting started with wallet addresses and seed phrases.

Lastly, accessing crypto through ETFs makes it a lot easier for people to allocate funds from their retirement accounts. In addition to institutions who must meet strict guidelines, there are many types of people who stand to benefit from buying a spot ETF over Bitcoin itself.

How Could a Spot ETF Impact Bitcoin’s Price?

ETFs allow many new investors to access Bitcoin. While it may not happen all at once, this could lead to sustained buying pressure over time as institutions and retirement accounts begin incorporating it into their portfolios. And when you add in regular investors who were uncomfortable using crypto exchanges, the future looks promising for spot ETFs.

A common and optimistic comparison is to look at how the first gold ETF impacted gold’s price:

bitcoin etf chart if it follows gold

The impact wasn’t immediate, but the emergence of ETFs had a very positive result on the price of gold over time. Bitcoin ETFs have already passed silver ETFS in AUM.

How are ETF Shares Priced?

Just like any company’s stock price, you should not look at a low share price of an ETF and assume it is “cheap”. While all ETFs aim to track the price of Bitcoin in terms of performance, the ETFs itself are priced in a much different way.

An ETF’s price is dependent on the Net Asset Value (NAV) divided by the number of shares issued for a fund. NAV is a representation of the total value of underlying assets (Bitcoin) in a fund at the end of the previous trading day.

Since each Bitcoin spot ETF has different amounts of outstanding shares and holdings, they will be priced differently. Regardless, each ETF should perform relatively in line with the price of Bitcoin itself.

How Do I Invest in a Bitcoin ETF?

The first step to purchasing a Bitcoin ETF is to open a brokerage account. There are many options these days, with the main differences to consider being user experience, customer support, and fee structure.

Once you have an account and have funded it, purchasing a Bitcoin ETF is done the same way as purchasing any other stock or ETF. Simply search for the ticker symbol within your account, and enter the amount of shares or dollars-worth to purchase.

These shares will reside in your portfolio along with your other positions, and can be exchanged back for dollars at any time that the U.S. stock market is open. Note that the volatility and tax considerations are the same for buying and selling ETFs as they are for the token itself.

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    Matt Pearlstein
    Matt Pearlstein
    Matt found crypto in 2016 and left TradFi to go full time in the industry a few years back. He is deep in the weeds of DeFi and also likes to go to the beach and play basketball.