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The digital asset space has seen exponential growth in recent years and companies at the forefront of the industry range across business lines, including digital asset exchanges, miners, and other infrastructure companies. Digital asset returns have generated substantial investor interest, both retail and institutional, and the broader ecosystem presents a wide variety of investment opportunities. This blog is intended to answer frequently asked questions on digital assets and more specifically, VanEck Crypto and Blockchain Innovators UCITS ETF (DAPP).
A: Digital assets can serve as a store of value, growth investment or, fixed income alternative.
A: Bitcoin can be considered a pure store of value or medium of exchange, while Ethereum can be considered a toolkit that is used to build new applications or use cases.
Bitcoin (BTC) is a digital currency that can be traded online and stored in cryptocurrency wallets. The underlying blockchain technology was used to launch Ethereum, a network of applications and contracts that is powered by Ether (ETH), the network’s cryptocurrency. Similar to BTC, ETH is also traded as a cryptocurrency, however its primary purpose is not to establish itself as an alternative monetary system, but rather to facilitate and monetize the operation of the Ethereum smart contract and decentralized application platform.
A: There are many different business lines in digital assets, and companies have many different focuses.
These companies are distinctly different from digital assets themselves. Digital asset companies may range from mining to hardware to exchanges that facilitate the trading of digital assets. They may engage in only one of these business lines or, they may engage in multiple, depending on their goals, capabilities and focus within the broader digital asset space. See more on digital asset companies here.
A: Individual companies are centralized organizations working towards a common goal of generating profits and cash flows for investors and shareholders, along with other characteristics shared by the majority of publicly traded companies. Digital assets, on the other hand, aim to be decentralized software protocols, without a CEO or voting rights for shareholders.
Digital asset companies also generate cash flows related to their various business lines, while the vast majority of cryptocurrencies do not generate cash flows. For a user to make a profit on a bitcoin trade, the user has to sell bitcoin at a higher price than what it was bought for, which is not the same as a business-related cash flow.
Companies are also currently regulated, so investors can gain access to digital asset disruption in the known format of a traditional equity ETF wrapper.
A: As early stage companies in an early stage asset class, the primary risks are volatility, regulatory and the potential for extended valuations.
A: The VanEck Crypto and Blockchain Innovators UCITS ETF can provide exposure in a growth, disruption, innovation, or alternative sleeve, along with serving as a core-satellite allocation. These names are not in the broad market benchmarks (yet), and the return profile does indicate low correlation to the broad market. Investors receive diversification and potential for alpha over a longer time horizon. It’s also important to emphasize that the MVIS® Global Digital Asset Equity Index is a new index without a long track record, and that correlations to both digital assets and broad equity benchmarks will most likely not remain static.
Source: Morningstar Direct as of 30/9/21.
MVIS Global Digital Assets Equity Index: intends to track the largest and most liquid companies in the digital assets segment.
MVIS CryptoCompare Bitcoin Index: intends to track the price of Bitcoin.
MVIS CryptoCompare Ethereum Index: intends to track the price of Ethereum.
NASDAQ 100 Index: intends to track 100 of the largest non-financial companies listed on the Nasdaq stock market.
S&P 500 Index: intends to track the performance of 500 large companies listed on stock exchanges in the United States.
MSCI ACWI Index: seeks to track the investment results of an index composed of large and mid-capitalization developed and emerging market equities.
The LBMA Gold Price is administered independently by ICE Benchmark Administration (IBA). IBA independently administers the price and provides the auction platform on which the LBMA Gold Price is calculated, while LBMA own the intellectual property rights. The platform is electronic, tradeable, auditable and in line with the IOSCO Principles for Financial Benchmarks.
NYSE Arca Gold Miners Index (GDMNTR) is intended to track the overall performance of companies involved in the gold mining industry.
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