Blockchain exchange traded funds are one way for investors to get exposure to the underlying technology of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, says one Wall Street brokerage, but there still are hurdles for many industries when it comes to distributed ledger technology, or DLT. UBS says non-cryptocurrency ETFs will be one option for investors, since “pure-plays” do not yet exist.

But ETFs may be hard-pressed to find company data for inclusion. “Companies that directly or indirectly enable the use of DLT products and services as well as companies that could use or stand to benefit from the technology could be included,” the UBS report said.

“Due to this broad definition and low thresholds to satisfy the criteria, you’ll see a wide range of companies within the ETFs. This may include, but is not limited to, large technology companies, semiconductor companies, banks, and capital markets companies.

Over time, as the DLT ecosystem develops, a purer-play universe may develop.” But UBS noted: “Although we believe DLT is where the ‘rubber meets the road’ for innovative ledger and data sharing technology, we think there could be significant friction that will likely impede widespread adoption for a number of years.”

Blockchain is basically a shared public ledger, also called a distributed database, which tracks transactions and ensures that the record of those transactions remains transparent and tamper-proof. While developed initially for Bitcoin, many projects aim to develop non-crypto currency versions of DLT for broader applications. Read more from…

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