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Fidelity May Offer Bitcoin to its 34M Retail Clients

Leading investment firm Fidelity is set to offer its massive customer base the chance to trade Bitcoin through its online brokerage service. The news emerged via a report from Wall Street Journal which highlighted sources with ties to the company. 

Speculation is Still Ongoing

Fidelity manages roughly 34.4 million brokerage accounts, making it one of the biggest investment management firms globally. According to reports, the company is considering bringing BTC trading options to its retail investors. Such a move would mark crypto-friendly Fidelity’s latest venture into the crypto space. 

Fidelity is yet to confirm any ongoing speculations regarding its potential plans. However, Galaxy Holdings CEO Mike Novogratz commented on the matter. Novogratz, who is also one of Fidelity’s first customers, said at New York’s SALT forum that he had heard some of the news.

A bird told me that Fidelity, a little bird in my ear, is going to shift their retail customers into crypto soon enough. hope that bird is right.”

He also alluded to the possibility that the supposed plans may be tied to certain recent announcements. Global firms Franklin Templeton and Blackrock Solutions shared similar plans as part of a movement toward institutional BTC adoption. 

Fidelity’s Crypto Ties

Fidelity is yet to alert users to any possible plans. Reports claim the company will attract attention from Washington if they indeed work to encourage crypto growth. Of course, this is far from the company’s first steps within the crypto industry.

Indeed, Fidelity was one of the earliest supporters of the virtual asset industry, particularly in the financial sector. However, CEO Abigail Johnson was instrumental in encouraging the company’s pro-crypto stance. Johnson initially began holding crypto-related conversations every week with her lieutenants almost ten years ago. 

In 2015, the financial giant jump-started efforts to mine Bitcoin. Not long after this, Fidelity encouraged retail customers to track their crypto funds by adding a link to Coinbase on their accounts. Later on, in 2020 the company rolled out its crypto funds for rich clients.

More recently, in April the company, also the US’ biggest provider of 401(k) savings accounts, launched a related product. Fidelity’s new offering made it possible for workers to save 20% of their retirement funds in BTC. This raised some eyebrows at the US Department of Labor. 

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Additionally, the company rolled out two new exchange-traded funds (ETFs) this year. The ETFs in question give clients exposure to companies in the crypto and metaverse sectors. Fidelity has also applied with the SEC to launch a Bitcoin ETF that would, if approved, give customers direct exposure to the digital asset.

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