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SEC Delays Decision on Bitcoin ETFs Again

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Blockchain Author Alex Tapscott and Firm Fined by SEC Fines for Securities Violations
Blockchain Author Alex Tapscott and Firm Fined by SEC Fines for Securities Violations

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Three proposals for Bitcoin Exchange Traded Funds have once again been put on hold by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Yesterday, the financial regulator published documents revealing that it has delayed a formal decision on the proposed rule changes by the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) BZX Exchange and the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) Arca.

The proposed rule changes were in connection with three Bitcoin ETFs, one each from asset managers Wilshire Phoenix, Bitwise Asset Management, and VanEck SolidX.

Per the documents, the date for the decision on listing VanEck has been changed to October 18. Wilshire Phoenix United States Bitcoin and Treasury Investment Trust will have its decision on September 29, while Bitwise’s listing on the NYSE Arca will get its decision on October 13.

As regards the reason for the delay, all the SEC had to say was, “The Commission finds it appropriate to designate a longer period within which to issue an order approving or disapproving the proposed rule change so that it has sufficient time to consider this proposed rule change.”

The VanEck proposal was filed back in January, while Bitwise chose to file once again in February. Wilshire Phoenix was the most recent of the three, with a July 1 filing date. Thanks to the provisions of stock trading and investment laws, the SEC has the right to postpone making a decision on proposed financial products to get more information on a rule change for the listing and deliberate on allowing it in the first place.

ETFs are a unique type of financial products. Essentially, an ETF is a security that tracks a basket of assets represented in the shares of the fund. Given how cryptocurrencies have been able to assimilate almost every aspect of the financial system, there has been much anticipation about Bitcoin and its eventual entry into ETFs.

The only problem is that the SEC hasn’t been as enthusiastic about this integration as crypto insiders have. This year alone, the agency has delayed Bitcoin ETF proposals from VanEck and Bitwise alone twice; once in March, and again in May. And that’s not all. Several other companies, including the Gemini Trust (owned by the Winklevoss twins), have had their Bitcoin ETF proposals either delayed or outright revoked over the past few years.

Sadly, it could be a while before the approval for Bitcoin ETFs eventually come alone. Back in December, Hester M. Peirce, a commissioner at the SEC, told investors that the prospect of this approval coming anytime soon is indeed bleak.

While speaking at the Digital Asset Investment Forum in Washington, Peirce said, “Definitely possible could be 20 years from now, or it could be tomorrow. Don’t hold your breath. The SEC took a long time to establish Finhub. It might take even longer to approve an exchange-traded product.”

Still, despite continued delays and rebuttals, crypto companies and other insiders have continued to submit proposals for Bitcoin ETFs. The products mark a new and innovative for of Bitcoin trading, and investment, and hopefully, the growth of crypto regulations would help make accommodations for this portfolio as well.

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