Coinbase shares are a cheap way to bet on crypto
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Opinion

Coinbase shares are a cheap way to bet on crypto

By listing on Nasdaq, Coinbase may undermine itself, giving investors an easy way to bet on bitcoin without paying its own high fees.

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On April 14, shares in Coinbase, the world’s largest crypto exchange, began trading on Nasdaq after a direct listing. On its first day as a public company it set a market capitalization of $86 billion.

That is roughly the same as HSBC and bigger than any European bank: ahead of BNP Paribas at $65 billion, UBS at $57 billion and Santanderat $50 billion.

Credit Suisse, which has been in the news recently and is one of the world’s largest wealth managers with $1.7 trillion of assets under management, has a market capitalization of just $25 billion.

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Brian Armstrong, Coinbase

The Swiss bank was founded in 1856. Coinbase was founded in 2012.

The numbers are staggering.

In a trading update at the start of April, Coinbase revealed it had 56 million verified users. Anyone with a smart phone can go through Coinbase to buy, sell and hold crypto: that’s a total addressable market of 3.5 billion people. And while they won’t all buy bitcoin, an increasing number of individuals and institutions are being drawn in.

Coinbase’s listing coincided with the latest and biggest crypto rally. Bitcoin had doubled in price this year, from $29,111 at the start of January to $63,224 on the day Coinbase began trading.


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