In the week, Wilshire Phoenix, a New York-based asset management firm, became the latest applicant to the SEC to have its attempt to launch a Bitcoin ETF shut down. The decision from the SEC is probably not surprising, as the reasons given were nothing new. But, there has been a backlash from a few sources.
Wiltshire Phoenix has posted their disdain at the latest decision from the SEC, and this also follows one of the Commission’s own, Hestor Pierce, known as the ‘Crypto Mom’. Peirce disagreed with the SEC, stating that the commission has once again disapproved of a proposal that would allow American investors access to Bitcoin via a product listed and traded on a national securities exchange, subject to the commission’s regulatory framework.
For the applicant, they have said they are very disappointed by the ruling as they claimed they made every effort to ensure they met with the requirements of the SEC.
“We made every effort to get the SEC’s attention on this important issue, including undertaking extensive analysis that was made available to the SEC staff, submitting key data, and offering to provide additional information to facilitate the listing of a much needed regulated bitcoin-related ETP in the United States. Unfortunately, the Order shows that all of these efforts did not receive the SEC’s full attention,” explained Wiltshire Phoenix.
Fears remain at the SEC for the US market.
The issues that persist for the SEC in relation to allowing a Bitcoin ETF to come to market revolve around the nascent market still allegedly being prone to market manipulation as well as investor protection concerns.
However, for Wiltshire Phoenix, they disagree entirely and actually feel that a regulated Bitcoin ETF would provide retail investors with a safer means to access exposure to Bitcoin. William Herrmann, Wilshire Phoenix’s managing director added that cryptocurrency demand will continue to grow regardless of the SEC’s ruling:
“Many retail investors are already investing in this commodity and investor demand continues to grow each day. Our ETP was created to provide investors with exposure to bitcoin through a regulated and transparent vehicle that also mitigates volatility. In my opinion, the Commission has done a great disservice to the public by rejecting this application.”
A waiting game
While it seems futile to continue applying for a Bitcoin ETF as the attempts since 2016 have all been shot down in similar fashion, the feeling is it is more a matter of time – but that time may still be years off.
According to the chief executive officer at Genesis Global Trading, Michael Moro, the ETF may only come once the current chairman of the SEC moves on.
“Yes, I do believe we’ll have one [A Bitcoin ETF]. No, I do not believe this is a 2020 event. I actually have said that I think there are a strong feeling and a general consensus that nothing’s going to happen until commissioner Clayton is no longer the chairman,” Moro said on the Castle Island Podcast.