The world may soon see the launch of an exchange traded bitcoin ETF. Led by the Winkelvoss Twins, Cameron and Tyler, the duo have formally registered the Winklevoss Bitcoin Trust with the SEC. The fund will be managed by Math-Based Asset Service LLC, a firm that was created by the two to be the sponsor of the trust. According to the S1 filing with the SEC, the fund is “ designed for investors seeking a cost-effective and convenient means to gain exposure to Bitcoins with minimal credit risk.” Shares in the fund will mimic moves in bitcoin prices minus a management fee. According to the filing, 1,000,000 shares in the trust will be sold at a proposed price of $20.09, to raise just north of $20,000,000.
The intention to launch the trust is the latest of ongoing investments of the Winklevosses in bitcoins. Other than investing a large part of their wealth in the digital currency, they have also invested in bitcoin startup Bitinstant.
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One caveat about the current trust initiative which was pointed out by QZ is that the fund doesn’t insure for theft or lost of the fund’s bitcoin holdings. As a result, shareholders could experience external losses that are not tied to the price of bitcoins. However, this isn’t a new worry, as there currently is a lack of bitcoin insurance available in the market and security continues to be one of the main issues in regards to holding bitcoins.
While the ETF would the first exchange traded fund, it wouldn’t be the first bitcoin investment fund. An example was a digital currency fund launched by Hub Culture and Ven earlier this year.