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Google has made a significant change to its advertising policies by opening the doors to ads for spot cryptocurrency exchange-traded funds (ETFs) in the United States starting from January 29th. The search engine giant has relaxed its policy to allow for the informed advertising of financial products.

According to Google‘s poligy page on restricted financial products, the company will permit ads promoting cryptocurrency coin exchanges in targeted advertisements in the United States, provided that the advertiser successfully registers by filling out the required form under Section 12 of the Exchange Act. Moreover, advertisers need to be certified by Google.

According to information from third-party sources, some asset management firms have started publishing ETF ads on Google. A social media post by WatcherGuru shows sponsored links for BlackRock and VanEck‘s spot Bitcoin ETFs appearing in Google search results. Another post by BITCOINLFG® mentions that Franklin Templeton’s products are among the sponsored links.

The update announced in December stated that this policy change became official on January 29th, 2024, and was implemented as planned.

Google explains cryptocurrency coin trusts as financial products that offer investors the opportunity to trade shares in trusts containing major digital currencies. This explanation includes various spot Bitcoin ETFs approved by regulators on January 10th, and since it does not reference a specific cryptocurrency, it paves the way for ads for other funds that may be approved in the future, such as spot Ethereum ETFs.

Google Offers Broader Permissions for Crypto Ads

In 2018, Google applied a broad ban on cryptocurrency-related ads, but has gradually lifted these restrictions in recent times. In June 2021, the company updated its policy to allow advertising for some crypto exchanges and wallets in the United States, while continuing to ban initial coin offerings (ICOs) and certain types of services. In July 2022, it expanded these permissions to the international arena by extending ads for exchanges and wallets.

In August 2023, it started allowing ads for blockchain-based NFT games that do not feature gambling. Google‘s current policy also indicates that ads for hardware wallets are accepted.

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