Wells Fargo: US bank set to offer crypto fund to rich clients

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Wells Fargo bankImage source, Getty Images

Another big US bank is set to introduce a crypto-currency fund, despite the recent fall in value of Bitcoin.

Wells Fargo said on Wednesday it would introduce professionally managed funds for its more wealthy clients.

In a report, its investment institute said the risks associated with digital currencies meant it would favour "qualified investors".

It came as the price of Bitcoin fell after China said it was imposing fresh curbs on cryptocurrency.

It took the value of the digital coin below $34,000 (£24,030) for the first time in three months on Wednesday, spurring a sell-off of other digital currencies including Ethereum and Dogecoin.

In a report titled "The investment rationale for cryptocurrencies", the Wells Fargo Investment Institute (WFII) said it viewed digital coins as an alternative investment.

"WFII believes that crypto-currencies have gained stability and viability as assets, but the risks lead us to favour investment exposure only for qualified investors, and even then through professionally managed funds," it said.

It is the latest in a series of big US banks to start trading in Bitcoin as the crypto-currency becomes more mainstream.

In March, investment bank Morgan Stanley became the first big US financial institution to offer wealth management clients with a "high-risk tolerance" access to Bitcoin funds.

JPMorgan Chase is also preparing to let some select clients invest in actively managed funds for the first time, the trade publication Coindesk reported in April.

Bitcoin fell on Wednesday after China decided to ban financial institutions and payment companies from providing services related to crypto-currency transactions.

It also warned investors against speculative crypto trading.

Bitcoin had already suffered sharp falls last week after Elon Musk said he would no longer accept payments for Tesla cars in the currency.