Larry Fink, the CEO of BlackRock, a company managing $9.5 trillion in assets, once called Bitcoin an “index of money laundering”, but today he said it is “digitalizing gold” during a Fox Business Interview Wednesday. This came weeks after the world’s largest asset manager applied for a spot Bitcoin ETF to the U.S. Securities Exchange Commission. This application led to institutional investors pouring cash into the market, causing the price of Bitcoin to rise to its 12-month high.
Fink believes that cryptocurrency is digitalizing gold, as an alternative to investing in gold as a hedge against the onerous problems of any one country. He also added that Bitcoin is an international asset.
This opinion is a huge change from 2017, when Fink said, “Bitcoin just shows you how much demand for money laundering there is in the world.” However, BlackRock is now investing in digital currency, and Fink believes that the asset will grow.
CoinGecko’s data indicates that the current price of a Bitcoin is $30,446, which is less than $17,000 at the beginning of the year. BlackRock now hopes for approval from Wall Street’s biggest regulator, as the digital asset industry is not yet legal in the U.S. and the SEC is taking a hard line against it. Despite this, experts consider BlackRock to have a chance, as nearly all of the ETFs that the asset manager has applied for were approved.