ETHERLive
ETHERLive delivers real-time price and volume data across 16+ exchanges to users in a clear and easy-to-understand package. Users can get up-to-the-second updates for each exchange/currency pair, as well as aggregated market averages for each exchange, currency, and the market as a whole. It also provides a global converted average of all the currency pairs monitored by ETHNews, converted to USD.

---

24hr ---
--%
Wednesday Jan 17th 2018
RESOURCES

The Basics

Learn the basics of Ethereum and various cryptocurrency technologies

Learn More

What is Ethereum?

Understand the underlying principles of the Ethereum Platform

Learn More

The Blockchain

Discover the revolutionizing technology known as the blockchain

Learn More
SUBMIT

Press Release

Submit a press release for consideration on ETHNews

Submit Press

Story / Dapp

Submit a story or DAPP to be considered for publication on ETHNews.

Submit Story

Explanation

Submit "Ethereum Explainer" content for consideration to be featured on ETHNews

Submit Topic
ETHNews Logo
---
--%
Home
News
Etherlive
Ether Price Analysis
Resources
Contact Us

Merrill Lynch Bans Customers From Investing In Barry Silbert’s Bitcoin Investment Trust

By

Jordan

Daniell

WriterETHNews.com

A Merrill Lynch memo informs brokers and clients that the Wall Street brokerage has stopped approving orders for the Bitcoin Investment Trust.

As reported by Reuters, Bank of America Merrill Lynch stopped processing orders for the Bitcoin Investment Trust nearly a month ago, on December 8, per a memo that has recently come to light.

In the internal memorandum, sent to approximately 17,000 brokers at Merrill Lynch and Merrill Edge, a trading sub-unit where clients manage their own trades, the company purportedly justifies the ban due to concerns about the "suitability and eligibility standards of this product."

The Bitcoin Investment Trust trades under the ticker symbol GBTC and is managed by Grayscale Investments, a subsidiary of Barry Silbert's Digital Currency Group. Silbert – a long-time financier who cut his teeth on Wall Street as an investment banker for Houlihan Lokey Howard & Zukin – founded Digital Currency Group in 2015 to oversee his multi-pronged foray into the budding cryptospace.

Recently, Silbert has come under fire for what some believe to be excessive hype pumping of cryptocurrencies for personal gain.

Shares in Bitcoin Investment Trust rose 1,550 percent last year – which actually surpassed bitcoin's own 1,300 percent gains.

Although many details remain shrouded regarding the motivation behind Merrill's internal memo, there is a possibility that the financial risk associated with bitcoin was compounded by the risk associated with Silbert's reputational capital.

In an email to Reuters, Silbert defends himself while somewhat unwittingly acknowledging the fact that Merrill has singled out his firm for exclusion. Per the email: "We look forward to speaking with Merrill Lynch and addressing any questions or concerns they have about Bitcoin Investment Trust. We are unaware of any similar policies at other brokerage firms."  

Prior to the ban on December 8, Merrill Lynch clients and brokers were able to buy GBTC. Merrill clients that hold "historic" positions in GBTC will be allowed to maintain them in contrast to the ceasing of new orders. Clients with fee-based advisory accounts managed by Merrill will, however, have to sell their holdings.

Jordan Daniell

Jordan Daniell is a writer living in Los Angeles. He brings a decade of business intelligence experience, researching emerging technologies, to bear in reporting on blockchain and Ethereum developments. He is passionate about blockchain technologies and believes they will fundamentally shape the future. Jordan is a full-time staff writer for ETHNews.

ETHNews is committed to its Editorial Policy

Like what you read? Follow us on Twitter @ETHNews_ to receive the latest Bank of America, Merrill Lynch or other Ethereum cryptocurrencies and tokens news.