Annual Survey

Bitwise/VettaFi Advisor Survey Reveals Wide Gap in Expectations on Spot Bitcoin ETF Approval; Suggests Event Could Be Bigger-Than-Expected Catalyst

San Francisco • January 4, 2024 UTC

Bitwise Asset Management, the largest crypto index fund manager in America, and VettaFi, a leading data-driven ETF platform, today released the findings of the sixth annual “Bitwise/VettaFi 2024 Benchmark Survey of Financial Advisor Attitudes Toward Crypto Assets.” The yearly survey touches on topics ranging from advisors’ current crypto allocations and preferred investment vehicles to bitcoin price predictions. The 2024 survey revealed persistent interest in crypto from clients, lingering barriers to access for advisors, and concerns about crypto regulation and volatility. Most notably, the poll suggested that the approval of a spot bitcoin ETF could generate greater demand among investors than many expect. 

The survey, which was conducted from October 20 to December 18, showed several key findings:

  • Less than half of all advisors expect a spot bitcoin ETF in 2024. Surprisingly, only 39% of advisors believe a spot bitcoin ETF will be approved in 2024. By contrast, Bloomberg ETF analysts peg the likelihood of a January approval at 90%.

  • ...But the vast majority see its approval as a major catalyst. Eighty-eight percent (88%) of advisors interested in purchasing bitcoin are waiting until after a spot bitcoin ETF is approved.

  • Access to crypto is still limited. Only 19% of advisors said they are able to buy crypto in client accounts.

  • Once you invest, you tend to stay invested (or invest more). Ninety-eight percent (98%) of advisors who currently have an allocation to crypto in client accounts plan to either maintain or increase that exposure in 2024.

  • Among advisors who allocate, the size of the allocation is rising. Large crypto allocations (more than 3% of a portfolio) more than doubled, from 22% of all client portfolios with crypto exposure in 2022 to 47% in 2023.

  • Client interest remains strong. Eighty-eight percent (88%) of advisors received a question about crypto from clients last year.

  • Held-away assets remain a major opportunity. Fifty-nine percent (59%) of advisors said “some” or “all” of their clients were investing in crypto on their own, outside of the advisory relationship.

  • Advisors have their sights set on crypto equity ETFs. Crypto equity ETFs were advisors’ top choice when asked what type of crypto exposure they were most interested in allocating to in 2024.

  • Regulatory uncertainty and volatility loom large. Sixty-four percent (64%) of advisors cited regulatory uncertainty as a barrier to greater crypto adoption in portfolios. Volatility was the second most pressing concern (47% of respondents).

  • Advisors prefer bitcoin over Ethereum. Seventy-one percent (71%) of advisors favor bitcoin over Ethereum, a marked increase from the previous year (53%).

“If you want to gauge where crypto is going, you need to talk to the professionals who control roughly half the wealth in America,” said Bitwise CIO Matt Hougan. “The big takeaway from these advisors this year is that, for all the hoopla surrounding the potential approval of a spot bitcoin ETF, it doesn’t appear to be priced in. There’s a massive gap in expectations between advisors and those who monitor ETF developments for a living. Couple that with the fact that almost 90% of advisors say they’re waiting for an ETF before making a bitcoin investment, and you see a lot of demand bubbling just below the surface.”

“Advisors and their clients continue to ask thoughtful questions about digital currency, its benefits, and its potential role in the portfolio,” said Jon Fee, Chief Marketing Officer at VettaFi. “The findings from the survey provide timely data for advisors to discuss with their peers and clients.”

Over 400 financial advisors answered a series of questions on crypto assets and their use in client portfolios. Survey respondents included independent registered investment advisors, broker-dealer representatives, financial planners, and wirehouse representatives from across the U.S. The full survey results can be read by clicking below.

READ SURVEY RESULTS

About VettaFi

VettaFi is a provider of indexing, data & analytics, industry-leading conferences, and digital distribution services to ETF issuers and fund managers. It operates the ETFdb, Advisor Perspectives, and ETF Trends websites and the LOGICLY portfolio analytics platform—engaging millions of investors annually—empowering and educating the modern financial advisor and institutional investor. For more information, please visit www.vettafi.com.

VettaFi, LLC is a wholly-owned subsidiary of TMX Group Limited (TMX Group). For more information about TMX Group, please visit www.tmx.com.

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About Bitwise

Bitwise Asset Management is the largest crypto index fund manager in America. Thousands of financial advisors, family offices, and institutional investors partner with Bitwise to understand and access the opportunities in crypto. For six years, Bitwise has established a track record of excellence managing a broad suite of index and active solutions across ETFs, separately managed accounts, private funds, and hedge fund strategies. Bitwise is known for providing unparalleled client support through expert research and commentary, its nationwide client team of crypto specialists, and its deep access to the crypto ecosystem. The Bitwise team of more than 60 professionals combines expertise in technology and asset management with backgrounds including BlackRock, Millennium, ETF.com, Meta, Google, and the U.S. Attorney’s Office. Bitwise is backed by leading institutional investors and has been profiled in Institutional Investor, Barron’s, Bloomberg, and The Wall Street Journal. It has offices in San Francisco and New York. For more information, visit www.bitwiseinvestments.com.

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