Bitcoin Under Pressure

SEC Again Postpones Decision on Four Crypto ETFs

The approval of a regulated crypto derivative this year is now looking far less likely, as the US regulators have once again deferred their decision on whether to approve any of the proposed Bitcoin ETFs.

Per an official document published by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the new deadlines to review four proposals have been shifted to November and December, as the agency needs more time to review the potential rule change further.

The SEC has extended its review of Kryptoin Bitcoin ETF, Global X Bitcoin Trust, Valkyrie XBTO Bitcoin Futures Fund, and Wisdomtree Bitcoin Trust. The regulatory body said in an extension notice that it would now give an answer on these proposal on Nov. 21, Dec. 8, Dec. 11 and Dec. 24, respectively.

A decision was expected no earlier than mid-October, 45 days from the time the applications for the funds were published in the federal register, but the SEC is yet to approve a single BTC exchange-traded fund.

“The Commission finds that it is appropriate to designate a longer period within which to take action on the proposed rule change so that it has sufficient time to consider the proposed rule change and any comments,” the SEC said in its filings.

There are a number of applications underway to get a bitcoin ETF listed, but so far none have been approved by the SEC. The agency only extended the deliberation window or opened the matter to public comments to avoid reaching any decision on a proposalو meaning today’s delay is no surprise.

Earlier in in September, the regulator pushed the deadline to make a decision on VanEck’s Bitcoin exchange-traded fund application to November 14.

In its latest attempt, the giant firm is offering its “Bitcoin Strategy ETF” to trade on the Cboe BZX Exchange. The proposed actively managed fund would not invest in the No.1 cryptocurrency directly, but rather futures and other investment vehicles that provide exposure to bitcoin.

VanEck, which has over $63 billion in assets under management, had previously filed with the US top watchdog for a regulated ETF tracking an index that draws data from five crypto exchanges.

VanEck also applied before for a physically-backed exchange-traded product. The first time was in collaboration with blockchain technology company, SolidX. Some had argued that the proposal from New York-based VanEck, the ninth biggest ETF issuer, was more likely to gain approval thanks to plans for a high minimum share price that would discourage retail investors.

However, their collective offering was foiled several times as the SEC cited fears of market manipulation.

SEC Chair Gary Gensler said that he would be open to approving a bitcoin-futures ETF, but only under certain conditions. The revelation rankled some fund managers who were hopeful of a physically backed ETF, but regulated like a normal exchange-traded fund under a 1933 law.