Bitcoin ETF: Will it Ever Happen?

As Bitcoins continue to reach new highs, many investors want a piece of the action. There’s just one problem. There’s no way for a retail investor to easily buy the cryptocurrency.

Sure, someone could do a little online sleuthing and come up with a number of different websites that promise to help buy and then store the electronic currency -- for a fee, of course. But how does an inexperienced investor separate the legit from a scam?

Fortunately, it appears a better solution is coming, and soon, too. The Securities and Exchange Commission looks poised to approve the United States’ first Bitcoin ETF, giving nervous investors an easy way to invest in this exciting new market.

Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss -- who still claim Mark Zuckerberg stole the idea of Facebook from them -- have proposed the Winklevoss Bitcoin ETF (NYSEBATS:COIN) a $300-million fund allowing investors easy access to the digital currency. Approval could come as early as March 11, with an IPO happening sometime in the summer or fall.

Trading on the New York Stock Exchange will give Canadian investors easy access to the ETF as well.

The ETF will be modeled much like a gold or silver ETF. The fund will buy the Bitcoins and store them securely. Each share will then represent ownership of a fraction of a Bitcoin, but without the hassle of storing it. Naturally, a management fee will be paid to the manager.

Bitcoin has been on fire of late, increasing more than 50% in the last three months alone, partially on enthusiasm the much-awaited ETF will happen.