Twitter is buzzing with speculation over BlackRock’s motives as it moves toward crypto
The Bitcoin community has voiced suspicion over the asset manager's goals and motives.
On June 15, BlackRock, the world’s largest asset manager, filed a spot Bitcoin ETF application with the SEC during a period of low market sentiment following the regulator’s enforcement actions against Binance and Coinbase over alleged securities law violations.
An institution of BlackRock’s stature expressing interest in the market has shown itself to be a bullish catalyst, with Bitcoin (BTC) breaking $30,000 on June 21. However, the timing of the move has drawn attention, particularly in light of recent regulatory hostilities towards other crypto assets.
As a result, some community members have voiced concerns about BlackRock’s interest in Bitcoin while other crypto assets come under fire. Commenting on the situation, chief investment officer at Bitwise Asset Management, Matt Hougan, said: “The future of crypto is more BlackRock and less Binance.”
Recent legacy moves have triggered a reversal in market sentiment, with the Fear and Greed Index jumping from 41 on June 15 to 65. Furthermore, Bitcoin spiked to $30,820 on June 21, marking a 10-week high and lifting the rest of the crypto market, which has seen inflows of $116 billion since June 20.
Despite injecting life into the Bitcoin market, some within that community are wary of BlackRock’s involvement.
Author and podcaster Preston Pysh used the social media platform to openly allege that unnamed “Wall Street parasites & government regulators” had deliberately advocated for legacy Bitcoin interest following recent regulatory actions, saying:
“I’m sorry, but after watching, Blackrock, Fidelity, Citadel, Schwab and now Deutsche Bank, all apply for #Bitcoin ETFs, spot exchanges, etc. only a few days after the SEC drops a TRO on Binance and sues Coinbase… how can’t you think this entire past year was a giant inside job coordinated between the Wall Street parasites & government regulators so they could catch-up…“
Pysh’s sentiment was amplified by Guy Turner of Coin Bureau, who called recent events a “crazy coincidence.”
Self-described “Crypto OG” RamenPanda highlighted wording in the ETF filing that suggested BlackRock could “use its discretion to determine which network should be considered the appropriate network for the trust’s purposes,” sparking debate on whether the asset manager intends to fork Bitcoin, leading to a two-tier system comprised of regulatory approved BTC and original BTC.
Others, including author Saifedean Ammous, wonder if this could lead to rehypothecation or the practice of an entity using an asset supplied as collateral to cover its obligations, raising concerns about transparency and default risk from overleveraging.
As the world’s largest asset manager, BlackRock’s move could be strategic, potentially heralding a regulatory breakthrough. However, it is critical to note that the suspicions surrounding BlackRock’s Bitcoin ETF application amidst regulatory challenges are conjectures without corroborating evidence.