Goldman Sachs is close to offering bitcoin and other digital assets to its rich private wealth-management clients, report says

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  • Goldman Sachs is close to offering bitcoin and other digital assets to its rich clients, CNBC reported.
  • This could happen as soon as the second-quarter of 2021, the bank’s global head of digital assets said.
  • A contingent of clients is looking for ways to participate in the digital assets space, she said.
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Goldman Sachs could begin to offer bitcoin and other digital-asset related investments to its private wealth-management clients, CNBC reported on Wednesday.

The bank could offer these investment vehicles as soon as the second-quarter, CNBC reported, citing Goldman’s recently named global head of digital assets, Mary Rich.

We are working closely with teams across the firm to explore ways to offer thoughtful and appropriate access to the ecosystem for private wealth clients, and that is something we expect to offer in the near-term,” Rich told CNBC in an interview this week.

The bank is exploring a range of investments in digital assets, right from physically-backed bitcoin, derivatives, or traditional investment vehicles, she said.

Bitcoin’s digital gold narrative remains at the forefront of the minds of growing numbers of people from traditional finance drawn towards the cryptocurrency. That has helped big US banks look at digital assets with less skepticism.

Goldman’s private wealth management business mostly caters to clients that hold at least $US25 ($33) million in investment capacity. Rich said a group of clients is looking at bitcoin as an inflationary hedge and the macro environment of the past 12 months has played a factor there. “There are also a large contingent of clients who feel like we’re sitting at the dawn of a new Internet in some ways and are looking for ways to participate in this space,” she said.

Earlier this month, Morgan Stanley announced it would offer wealthy clients access to three bitcoin funds. Two are run by Galaxy Digital, headed by Mike Novogratz, while one will be jointly managed by asset manager FS Investments and NYDIG.

Goldman could offer similar bitcoin funds, as well as other ways to invest that are “more akin to the underlying asset class, which trades 24-7 globally,” Rich said. She said some bitcoin funds, like Galaxy’s, can only be traded once a quarter.

“We’re still in the very nascent stages of this ecosystem. No one knows exactly how it will evolve, or what shape it will be,” Rich said. “But I think it’s fairly safe to expect it will be part of our future.”

Bitcoin was last trading 1.1% lower at $US58,057 ($76,313) on Wednesday, but it is up 96% year-to-date and about 800% since this time last year.