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State of Wisconsin Discloses $162M Worth of BlackRock and Grayscale Spot Bitcoin ETF

SWIB becomes first state agency to disclose spot bitcoin ETF holdings, with substantial investments in IBTC and GBTC

Spot Bitcoin ETF

The State of Wisconsin Investment Board (SWIB) has recently disclosed significant investments into two of the most popular spot bitcoin ETFs, BlackRock’s iShares Bitcoin Trust (IBTC) and Grayscale’s GBTC.

SWIB Holds $162M in Bitcoin ETF Shares

According to a 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on Tuesday, the investment board currently holds 2,450,400 shares of IBTC, valued at over $99 million at press time. The Form 13F is a quarterly report that asset managers with at least $100 million in asset under management (AUM) are expected to file with the SEC, disclosing their equity holdings.

The SWIB is an independent state agency that manages and invests the assets of the Wisconsin Retirement System, the State Investment Fund (SIF), and other state trust funds. According to its website, the agency currently has over $156 billion in AUM.

The investment board also disclosed in the filing that it holds 1,013,000 shares of GBTC, valued at $63,687,310 at the end of March, bringing the total investment to $162 million in bitcoin ETFs.

With the latest disclosure, SWIB becomes the first state agency to publicly reveal its holdings in spot bitcoin ETF, which were just recently approved.

Mainstream Institutional Adoption Underway

The news was met with excitement from the crypto community as it highlights the growing institutional interest in bitcoin and marks the digital asset’s inclusion in traditional investment portfolios.

Commenting on the disclosure, Bloomberg’s Senior ETF Analyst Eric Balchunas said in an X post, “Wow, a state pension bought $IBIT in first quarter. Normally you don’t get these big fish institutions in the 13Fs for a year or so (when the ETF gets more liquidity) but as we’ve seen these are no ordinary launches. Good sign, expect more, as institutions tend to move in herds.”

Since the approval of a spot bitcoin ETF in the United States in January, bitcoin has received massive attention from institutions. This investment vehicle allows institutional investors like the SWIB to gain exposure to bitcoin without the hassles of direct ownership such as storage and security.

The ease of investing and regulatory protection offered by spot bitcoin ETFs make them appealing to institutional investors. With the US and Hong Kong already ahead, other countries, including Australia and South Korea, are racing to launch their spot bitcoin ETFs.

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