Swiss digital asset manager Pando Asset AG today filed an application with the SEC to offer a spot Bitcoin ETF in the U.S.

The Pando Asset Spot Bitcoin Trust would offer investors shares backed by Bitcoin with Bank of New York Mellon as the administrator and Coinbase Custody as the fund's custodian.

A genuine Bitcoin ETF, one that directly tracks BTC and not just derivatives, has so far eluded U.S. investors. But the idea is this: shares in a Bitcoin ETF would gain and lose value as Bitcoin's price fluctuates, and investments in those shares would allow buyers to gain exposure to BTC without actually buying or holding digital coins.

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Pando currently has $29 million worth of assets under management across its three exchange-traded products (ETPs): Pando Asset Crypto 6 ETP, Pando Asset Crypto Bitcoin ETP, and the Pando Asset Crypto Ethereum ETP. All of the funds currently trade on the SIX Swiss Exchange.

The first fund tracks the performance of the top six crypto assets, which currently includes coins like Bitcoin, Ethereum, Solana, and Cardano.

In its previous rejections of spot Bitcoin ETF applications, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has cited concerns about potential market manipulation, price volatility, custody options, and the reliability of price data. But the firms pushing to register funds have argued that the SEC granted approvals to similarly structured Bitcoin futures ETFs, which track the price of contracts that bet on the future price of BTC. These contracts are derivative investment products regulated by the CFTC.

But anticipation that a Bitcoin ETF application might soon be approved has been overwhelmingly bullish for existing funds in the U.S. and abroad. A recent CoinShares report found that optimism for an SEC approval have brought $1.5 billion into crypto funds so far in 2023—90% of it going into funds that track Bitcoin.

Bitcoin had been hovering around $37,600 on Wednesday morning, according to CoinGecko, but gained a little buoyancy closed in on $38,000 after news of the SEC filing began to spread. Compared to a day ago, Bitcoin is trading flat.

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The new filing puts Pando in the running with other high profile Bitcoin ETF issuer hopefuls, like BlackRock, VanEck, Valkyrie, and and WisdomTree.

Pando, which is based in Zug, Switzerland, already offers Bitcoin and Ethereum exchange-traded products (ETPs) in its home country, Germany, the Netherlands, Lichtenstein, and Luxembourg. Since last June, the company has been working to gain approval to market its products throughout the rest of the European Union and the Americas.

Edited by Guillermo Jimenez

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