SEC goes ahead with Bitcoin ETF proposals
The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has quietly begun considering two Bitcoin ETF proposals, public documents show. According to the SEC documents as of March 23, the agency has instituted formal proceedings to determine whether to approve a rule change that would allow NYSE Arca to list two exchange-traded funds (ETFs) proposed by fund provider ProShares.
According to the order, “The Commission is instituting proceedings according to Section 19(b)(2)(B) of the Act to determine whether the proposed rule change should be approved or disapproved. The institution of such proceedings is appropriate at this time because of the legal and policy issues raised by the proposed rule change.”
It started with, ProShares first proposing these two funds in September, before CBOE and CME had launched their Bitcoin futures products, and NYSE Arca began seeking SEC approval to list these funds in December.
Both ProShares Bitcoin ETF and ProShares Short Bitcoin ETF would each hold Bitcoin futures contracts, providing retail investors with the ability to indirectly invest in the flagship cryptocurrency or bet against it through a pure investment product.
However, according to CCN reports, the SEC had requested that the fund providers withdraw their Bitcoin ETF applications and later issued a statement expressing their reluctance to approve these products until more investor protections is guaranteed. In response, last month, Chris Concannon, president of CBOE, requested the SEC to consider Bitcoin ETF proposals on a case-by-case basis rather than as a single product class. He further noted that CBOE has successfully cleared several rounds of Bitcoin futures expirations without incident and said that the Bitcoin markets are rapidly maturing and most probably would warrant a regulated ETFs.
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