Cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase Global (COIN 4.30%) had its highly anticipated initial public offering yesterday, and standing ready was ARK Invest fund manager Cathie Wood, who bought nearly 750,000 shares for three of her exchange-traded funds (ETFs).
Coinbase debuted on the Nasdaq exchange at $381 per share, but quickly hit a high of just under $430, before closing the day at around $328. That closing price gives Wood a $248 million stake in the crypto exchange.
In her daily letters to her ETF investors describing what was bought and sold on any particular day by a fund, Wood revealed her ARK Innovation (ARKK 3.36%), ARK Fintech Innovation (ARKF 2.32%), and ARK Next Generation Internet (ARKW 2.65%) ETFs bought a combined total of 749,205 shares.
By far the largest purchaser was the ARK Innovation ETF, which bought 68% of Wood's total, or 512,535 shares, followed by over 147,000 shares for Next Generation, and the remainder by Fintech Innovation.
The Next Generation ETF also owns 7.79 million shares of Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC 1.57%), accounting for over 5% of the fund's total portfolio. You can't buy Bitcoin (BTC -4.90%) from Grayscale, a fund that buys the tokens; you only get indirect exposure to the cryptocurrency. From Coinbase, however, you can buy cryptocurrency.
The crypto exchange raised nearly $3 billion in Wednesday's IPO and is seen as a stabilizing force for Bitcoin, which has more than doubled in 2021 so far and is up almost 850% over the past year. Although there is growing interest in cryptocurrencies as a long-term investment, they remain a mystery to large swaths of the public. A handy guide to understanding them helps bridge that knowledge gap.