Will the SEC approve VanEck’s Bitcoin ETF?

The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has acknowledged VanEck’s application for their bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF). Now a 45-day countdown has started awaiting a response to the ETF filing. Before the end of this period, the SEC will have to approve, deny, or extend the review period. Extending the review period could mean another 240 days of nailbiting.

VanEck filed an application for the ETF earlier this year. The Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) then quickly followed and applied for approval to list VanEck’s fund. The completed application form was published on 1 March. Should the SEC approve the filing, it would be the first ETF to be approved in the United States.

VanEck has worked hard to get an approval over the past years and has submitted several applications to date, none with success unfortunately.

The SEC has not yet approved any bitcoin ETF filings. A large number of companies have tried to get their ETF approved but have failed. This time VanEck is not the only who have filed with the SEC. Other companies that have applied for approval in 2021, include Valkyrie, WisdomTree and more recently, First Trust Advisors and SkyBridge Capital, the hedge fund run by former White House Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci, became the latest firm to see SEC approval.

The SEC is clear about its concerns which mainly relate to bitcoin’s lack of trading volume and concerns about market manipulation. The Commission is particularly concerned that there is no demonstrable evidence that exchange can prevent fraude or manipulation.

While there is been no EFT approval yet, institutional investments in bitcoin with a similar dynamic are already happening. Take for example Grayscale’s bitcoin fund. While you do not buy and therefore own bitcoin directly, the stock you invest in does reflect Bitcoin’s value.

Canada has already beaten the United States by being the first country in North America to approve an ETF and the fact that their neighboring country has approved an ETF should be encouraging for US applicants and interested investors.

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