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Financial giant Franklin Templeton has applied to the SEC for approval to launch a Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) named the Franklin Bitcoin ETF, with Coinbase as the custodian and trading on the Cboe BZX Exchange.
Asset manager Franklin Templeton, a financial giant managing over $1.4 trillion on behalf of its clients, has submitted an application to the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to launch a Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF).
According to the filed application, the ETF would be named the Franklin Bitcoin ETF, with custody entrusted to Coinbase Custody Trust Company. If approved, the ETF would trade on the Cboe BZX Exchange and use the Bitcoin price reference index from CME to determine its value.
As of now, the SEC has yet to approve any Bitcoin spot ETF and has postponed decisions on pending applications from other major financial players such as Blackrock, Fidelity, Grayscale, Ark Investment, among many others, as it evaluates the surge in recent requests.
Franklin Templeton and Cryptocurrencies
In September 2022, Franklin Templeton, the asset manager, launched a thematic ETF based on the metaverse, becoming the second European company to do so. The ‘Franklin Metaverse UCITS ETF’ currently trades at $27.54 on the Deutsche Boerse, London Stock Exchange, and Borsa Italiana.
This ETF provides direct exposure to several companies, mostly tech giants, involved in the metaverse, including notable names like Apple, Alphabet, Meta Platforms, Microsoft, and Paypal, among others.
In April 2023, Franklin Templeton announced the expansion of its Franklin OnChain US Government Money Fund (FOBXX) to the Polygon blockchain, demonstrating its trust in the network, which previously only had Stellar support. Polygon is an Ethereum scaling platform that significantly speeds up and streamlines network transactions.
FOBXX is the first mutual fund in the United States to leverage the security and transparency of blockchain to modernize the way financial assets and ownership are recorded within an investment fund. Unlike traditional funds, FOBXX uses a public blockchain for a decentralized and transparent record of transactions and ownership of fund shares.
Roger Bayston, Head of Digital Assets at Franklin Templeton, stated that extending the fund’s reach to the Polygon network would help the fund “be further compatible with the rest of the digital ecosystem, specifically through an Ethereum-based blockchain.”
Therefore, it’s not surprising that Franklin Templeton has filed an application for a Bitcoin Spot ETF, especially at a time when, according to several analysts, the SEC is highly likely to approve Bitcoin ETFs despite their historical reservations.