Why I’d Still Prefer Direct BTC Ownership Over a Spot ETF

Crypto with Lorenzo
8 min readJan 9, 2024
Image by Valentyn Volkov at Shutterstock

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Since Larry Fink, BlackRock’s CEO, did a complete 180 and started heaping praise on Bitcoin last year, optimism has returned to the crypto space, especially for those focused on Bitcoin.

This, alongside Grayscale’s win against the US Securities and Exchange Commission (US SEC), which forces the regulator to review the company’s plans to convert its Bitcoin Trust to a spot Bitcoin ETF, has generated much hype for the real possibility of these ETFs seeing the light of day in the USA.

There hasn’t been a single day over the past nine months where we haven’t heard about a media outlet or crypto commentator discussing a spot Bitcoin ETF.

It’s a big deal for Americans (particularly institutional investors) and anyone eligible to trade US stocks. I get it. There is the significant convenience of having a commodity readily traded on a stock exchange without the entire rigmarole of creating an additional account, doing KYC AML checks, etc.

On top of this, firms behind spot Bitcoin ETFs have to follow strict rules to guarantee more transparency and consumer protection. This is why so many amendments have been made to the SEC filings, as the regulator needs to be fully satisfied with the submissions.

With BTC returning to $47,000, the anticipation of an approval has only intensified in recent weeks…