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The EU's Biggest ETF Firm Expands Into Crypto Products

Europe’s largest trader of exchange-traded funds (ETFs) is now entering the crypto world.

Amsterdam-based speed trader Flow Traders NV co-CEO Dennis Dijkstra told Bloomberg Thursday that his firm was expanding its trading products to exchange-traded notes (ETNs) based on bitcoin and ether.

XBT Provider, a Stockholm-based firm that offers ETFs based on bitcoin and ether, confirmed that Flow Traders NV has “dramatically increased” its securities trading over the last few months.

According to Bloomberg, unlike the major U.S. trading firms currently offering cryptocurrency futures, Flow Traders is the first one to “disclose it’s buying and selling crypto notes listed on regulated stock exchanges.”

In the interview, Dijkstra said:

“People underestimate crypto. It’s big, and it is to be regulated very soon. The market participants are much more professional than people think. Institutional investors are interested — we know they are because we get requests.”

While the Dutch company is moving forward in crypto trading, the country’s regulators are wary of the move.

Nienke Torensma, a spokeswoman for the Dutch Authority for the Financial Markets (AFM), said in a statement that “We discourage activities in cryptos both by consumers and professional license holders.”

“By virtue of its newness and the anonymity it potentially offers, it is very prone to abuse. Given its inability to serve the promised purpose as a currency, we don’t regard it to be an asset class,” she continued.

CoinDesk reported in March that the country’s finance minister, Wopke Hoekstra, issued a letter to Parliament to urge for “an international approach” to regulate cryptocurrency.

Image via Shutterstock

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UK Asset Manager Adds Support for Ethereum Exchange-Traded Product

UK-based asset manager Hargreaves Lansdown is moving to offer its customers access to two ethereum-based exchange-traded notes (ETNs).

According to a report by CityWire,  the asset manager is opening the doors to two ethereum-tied ETNs – named COINETH:SS and COINETHE:SS – that are denominated in Sweden’s national currency, the krona, and the euro, respectively.

The move comes just months after the company first began offering its client base some degree of access (through the traded security) to the cryptocurrency market.

In June, the firm – which was founded in the 1980s and boasted more than £61 billion in assets under management last year – announced that it was working with Swedish firm XBT Provider to allow its customers to buy shares in an ETN tied to bitcoin. That ETN, traded on Sweden’s Nasdaq exchange, was first approved in 2015.

The idea behind securities like XBT’s ETNs is that, rather than investing directly in the market through the purchase of a cryptocurrency, investors can buy exposure through related instruments instead.

Danny Cox, head of communications at Hargreaves Lansdown, described the offering as a “complex investment” for select investors.

London image via Shutterstock

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Disclaimer: This article should not be taken as, and is not intended to provide, investment advice. Please conduct your own thorough research before investing in any cryptocurrency.