New bitcoin-linked security to premiere on Wall Street

New York (AFP) –


Bitcoin will take another step closer to mainstream investing Tuesday with the launch of a new security Tuesday on the New York Stock Exchange.

ProShares, a leader in exchange traded funds, a type of investment linked to an index, will unveil the bitcoin futures-linked vehicle under the ticker "BITO," the company said Monday.

The launch has been eagerly anticipated in the world of crypto-money, lifting bitcoin above $62,000 in recent days, a level not seen since April.

Rather than a direct investment in the digital currency, BITO will invest "primarily in bitcoin futures," ProShares said.

Unlike mutual funds, which are traded only once per day, ETFs can be transacted throughout the trading day.

"We believe a multitude of investors have been eagerly awaiting the launch of a bitcoin-linked ETF," said ProShares Chief Executive Michael Sapir.

"BITO will open up exposure to bitcoin to a large segment of investors who have a brokerage account and are comfortable buying stocks and ETFs, but do not desire to go through the hassle and learning curve of establishing another account with a cryptocurrency provider and creating a bitcoin wallet or are concerned that these providers may be unregulated and subject to security risks."

The Securities and Exchange Committee has not blocked the launch of the ProShares fund. However, the agency urged investors to "carefully weigh the potential risk and benefits" in a recent statement on Twitter.

The arrival of the ETF comes six months after cryptomoney exchange platform Coinbase premiered on the Nasdaq. The company, founded in 2012, now worth more than $75 billion.