SEC Bides its Time on Pulling Bitcoin ETF Trigger… Again


The SEC has once again decided that caution is the better part of valor when faced with deciding on a long-awaited Bitcoin ETF. The Securities Commission has delayed decisions on three more Bitcoin ETF proposals, buying more time on previous delayed decisions from March, and then May.

 VanEck SolidX and Bitwise Asset Management, who are becoming old-hat at this whole ETF application malarkey, along with Wilshire Phoenix, are the three that have faced a delay in the decision from the SEC this time.

The US regulator has been bombarded with Bitcoin ETF applications going back to 2017 when the Winklevoss Twins hoped to get a fund off the ground when Bitcoin was really unheard of in the mainstream. They failed, and have subsequently failed again, but still, so has everyone.

The SEC claimed back in 2017 that the markets were too volatile, easily manipulated, and difficult to survey for an ETF based on Bitcoin. Those are still pretty much their talking points for not opening the doors on this institutional trading product – but at least they are taking time to consider it. 

These last three ETF applications running the gauntlet now need to wait for the end of September (Sept. 29. For Wiltshire Phoenix,), Oct. 18 for Van Eck and Oct. 13 for Bitwise as the SEC evokes its right to mull things over some more. 

The SEC stated in each case:

“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 delay tactics from the SEC are becoming pretty standard with these applications, and the excitement and expectation of this fund coming to fruition has mostly evaporated. Not even one of Crypto’s most prominent supporters in the SEC, Hester Pierce, believes it is imminent, telling investors back in December 2018, “Don’t hold your breath.”

The cryptocurrency community so covets ETFs as many believe a successful application will be the flood gates that open to traditional investors, and their money. ETFs are a type of security that tracks a basket of assets proportionately represented in the fund’s shares and are common ground for big-money investors.

Bitcoin has already seen another institutional financial product, Futures trading, opened by CME and CBOE, back in December 2017. The timing of those products being launched couldn’t have been better timed as the price of Bitcoin shot to its all-time high of $20,000, but one has to ask how much of that price spike was down to futures, and how much was just silly season speculative madness?

Darryn Pollock
Darryn has been interested in the blockchain and cryptocurrency space since he heard about Bitcoin in 2015. He then decided to use his journalism degree to report on this fascinating fintech space in 2016, and has not looked back since.

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