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Bitcoin ETF hopeful Hashdex has released an advert proclaiming that “Bitcoin’s Time Has Arrived,” as speculation mounted that a decision from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on approval of a spot Bitcoin ETF could be imminent.
Citing “sources extremely close to the matter,” TechCrunch’s Jacquelyn Melinek wrote Thursday that “the bitcoin spot ETF is going to be approved by the SEC for multiple firms' applications.” She added, “expecting something tomorrow,” pointing to potential news on Friday.
Others took a more cautious stance. “SEC is giving final comments as we speak, then issuers will submit final 19b-4s and S-1s soon after,” Bloomberg senior ETF analyst Eric Balchunas said on Thursday. “So I mean this is def as close to "done" as we've been, but no official approval as far as I know.”
Washington moves slowly, and later reports suggested the approval process could stretch into next week, giving the SEC time to review comments and amendments.
“Expecting some amended 19b-4 filings today as well as some eleventh hour phone calls concerning comments on S-1s and possible launch dates,” Fox Business’ Eleanor Terrett wrote. “The timeline for approvals still looking like next week but will all depend on how fast the [SEC] can read through comments and amendments made today.”
Bloomberg analyst James Seyffart agreed, pointing to “potential approval orders next week.” in a Friday morning tweet. “Today we're looking for 19b-4 amendment filings that'll include changes that SEC and issuers have been discussing for weeks. Namely cash create/redeem. (honestly I expected these by now),” he said.
VanEck pledges potential ETF profits to Bitcoin core devs
In anticipation of a Bitcoin ETF approval, investment firm VanEck tweeted that it would pledge 5% of potential ETF profits to Bitcoin core developers at Bitcoin Brink. The firm added that it had made an initial donation of $10,000, stating that, "We’re not Bitcoin tourists at VanEck. We’re in it for the long haul."
Approval of a U.S. spot Bitcoin ETF is a long-held ambition of the crypto faithful, who see it as a bellwether for institutional adoption of crypto. The product would track the price of Bitcoin while enabling investors to gain exposure to the asset without the hassle of buying, storing, and holding Bitcoin. Several major investment firms, including BlackRock, Fidelity, and Invesco, have filed ETF applications with the SEC.
In August, the SEC said it needed more time to evaluate the multiple spot Bitcoin ETF applications it has received. Other firms filing Bitcoin ETFs include WisdomTree, Galaxy Digital, Valkyrie Funds, GlobalX, and Ark/21Shares.
Financial advisors are not optimistic that a Bitcoin ETF will actually be approved by the SEC this year, with only 39% of advisors polled in a survey by Bitwise Investment advisors saying they’re confident that it will happen.