SEC postpones ruling on VanEck bitcoin ETF until at least June

Apr 28th, 2021 | By | Category: ETF and Index News

The US Securities and Exchange Commission has delayed its decision on whether to approve the listing of the VanEck Bitcoin Trust until at least mid-June, according to a filing on Wednesday.

SEC postpones ruling on VanEck bitcoin ETF until at least June

The SEC has indicated it will not be rushed into approving the first US-listed bitcoin ETF.

The financial markets regulator had been on the clock to make a judgement with 3 May serving as the official 45-day deadline since VanEck‘s application was first submitted.

The Commission has, however, extended this time period by another 45 days, designating 17 June as the date by which it shall either “approve or disapprove, or institute proceedings to determine whether to disapprove” the proposal.

Several ETF issuers are currently seeking to introduce the first US-listed bitcoin ETF with WisdomTree, Fidelity, and Galaxy Digital all having sent in their own applications.

Grayscale Investments, meanwhile, has said it is “100% committed” to converting the $39 billion Grayscale Bitcoin Trust into an ETF, highlighting the wider range of entities also seeking to stake a claim in this space.

The resurgence of interest from prospective bitcoin ETF issuers follows from the February decision by Canadian securities regulators to greenlight digital asset ETFs in the country. Canada has since welcomed four directly backed bitcoin ETFs as well as three ethereum funds.

The experience in Canada highlights how important first-mover advantage can be – the Purpose Bitcoin ETF (BTCC.C CN) has already surpassed $1bn in assets, well beyond the level of capital held by its rivals, despite coming to market just one day earlier than the next bitcoin fund.

Many are bullish about the possibility of a bitcoin ETF arriving in the US by the end of the year, citing the growing global acceptance of digital assets, the softening regulatory stances in Canada and Europe, and the change of guard at the SEC with new Chairman Gary Gensler believed to have a more favourable view of the crypto market compared to his predecessor Jay Clayton.

The delay to the VanEck Bitcoin Trust, however, indicates that the SEC will not be rushed into a judgement. Indeed, the creation of digital assets has raised some serious existential questions about the current financial system and the dominance of the US dollar. Any decision that would facilitate greater acceptance and adoption of digital assets is likely to be scrutinized closely.

Nigel Green, CEO and founder of deVere Group, a global independent financial advisory, said: “Governments, central banks, and regulators will be keen to protect the currency status quo. We should expect considerably higher levels of regulation in the crypto market. Indeed, I believe it is inevitable.

“However, bitcoin investors shouldn’t be put off by the likelihood of greater government scrutiny. Major draconian clampdowns are unlikely as digital currencies are increasingly regarded as the future of money – even by traditionalists. They can’t put the genie back in the bottle.”

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