Wealth Managers Are Being Inundated With Calls About Bitcoin

At 74, Cumberland Advisors’ David Kotok has guided wealthy clients through a long career’s worth of bubbles and crashes. Now he’s being inundated with questions about the latest soaring asset to confound investors — bitcoin.

“Clients bring up bitcoin all the time,” said Kotok. “They think it’s cool. It has the newness, which is attractive to some people, though others would say newness is a risk they don’t want to take.”

Wealth managers across the U.S. are fielding calls and emails from clients worried they’re missing out on something big by not owning bitcoin. While most advisers don’t recommend buying such a volatile asset with no intrinsic value, they do have tips for clients who have taken the plunge, or are dead set on doing so.

The cryptocurrency has been whipsawing Wall Street: UBS Group AG, the world’s largest wealth manager, is shunning bitcoin allocations because of a lack of government oversight, while Michael Novogratz is starting a $500 million hedge fund to wager on digital assets. As bitcoin mania moves to Main Street, thanks to its spectacular rise from about $750 to $8,200 in a year, five advisers offer some suggestions…

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