American multinational investment bank Morgan Stanley has doubled down on crypto after purchasing more shares of the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC). The bank disclosed this information through a filing with the US Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) earlier this week.
In the filing, Morgan Stanley disclosed that it purchased the shares through the Morgan Stanley Insight Fund (CPODX). With this purchase, the number of GBTC shares under the fund increased to 1,520,549 at the end of Q3, 2021. This figure marks a 63% rise, seeing as the fund only had 928,051 GBTC shares in the second quarter of 2021.
Morgan Stanley’s Growth Portfolio also increased its BTC exposure to hold a total of 3,642,118 GBTC shares in Q3. This figure represents a 71% increase for 2,130,153 in Q2.
On top of this, the Morgan Stanley Global Opportunity Portfolio had 1,463,714 GBTC in the quarter ending September 30. In comparison, this fund had only 919,805 GBT shares at the end of Q2.
Cumulatively, the three portfolios and fund held 6,626,381 GBTC shares at the end of September. At the time of writing, GBTC is changing hands at $46.42 (£34.86). At the stock’s current price, Morgan Stanley’s exposure to BTC stands at $306.34 million (£230.07 million).
Increasing interest in BTC
The Morgan Stanley Insight Fund, the Morgan Stanley Growth Portfolio, and the Morgan Stanley Global Opportunity Portfolio allow the bank to invest in BTC without holding the coin directly.
Morgan Stanley also invests in BTC through its Europe Opportunity Fund, which buys into established and upcoming companies in Europe. A September filing disclosed that the fund had more than doubled its GBTC holdings since April 2021. The bank, however, has not filed a disclosure on this fund yet.
In September, BTC was performing poorly, having traded below $50,000.00 (£37,562.50) for the better part of the month. The flagship crypto, however, managed to overcome the bearish trend and surged to hit a new ATH at $68,789.63 (£51,678.21) on November 10.
At the time of writing, Bitcoin (BTC/USD) is changing hands at $58,594.03 (£44,021.29) after gaining 4.57% over the past 24 hours.
Apart from investing indirectly in BTC, Morgan Stanley also announced the formation of a crypto-focused research division in September. In the same announcement, the bank disclosed that it had appointed Sheena Shah as its Lead Cryptocurrency Analyst. The research team seeks to explore the growing importance of cryptos and other digital assets in global markets.
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