Fidelity Investments plans to allow investors to put a bitcoin account in their 401(k)s, the first major retirement-plan provider to do so.
Employees won’t be able to start adding cryptocurrencies to their nest eggs right away, but later this year, the 23,000 companies that use Fidelity to administer their retirement plans will have the option to put bitcoin
on the menu. The endorsement of the nation’s largest retirement-plan provider suggests crypto investing is moving further into the mainstream, but it remains to be seen whether employers will embrace it for their workers.
Fidelity’s move comes a month after the Labor Department expressed concerns about including cryptocurrencies in retirement plans. It is also an uneasy time for the stock market, with the S&P 500
down almost 10% this year in part due to rising interest rates. Bitcoin is notoriously volatile and has lost more than 40% of its value since its November high.
“There is a need for a diverse set of products and investment solutions for our investors,” said Dave Gray, head of workplace retirement offerings and platforms at the Boston-based company. “We fully expect that cryptocurrency is going to shape the way future generations think about investing for the near term and long term.”
Under the plan, Fidelity would let savers allocate as much as 20% of their nest eggs to bitcoin, though that threshold could be lowered by plan sponsors. Gray said it would be limited to bitcoin initially, but he expects other digital assets to be made available in the future.
An expanded version of this report appears on WSJ.com.
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