In brief

  • Brazil's regulators have approved a Bitcoin ETF launched by QR Capital.
  • The company argues that it could help pave the way for a similar product in the US.

The first Latin American Bitcoin ETF, dubbed QBTC11, has been approved by Brazil’s regulators, QR Capital, the company behind it, announced today.

“URGENT: CVM has just approved the first Bitcoin ETF in Latin America, the QBTC11,” QR Capital announced, adding, “The ETF of QR Asset Management, manager of the QR Capital Group, will be listed on B3, which becomes the second exchange in the world to have a 100% Bitcoin ETF.”

ETFs, or exchange-traded funds, are a special type of security that comprise certain assets (or baskets of them) and track their market prices. In the case of Bitcoin ETFs, that asset is BTC. ETFs are tradeable on traditional exchanges and allow institutions to gain exposure to an asset’s volatility without actually holding it.

According to QR Capital, QBTC11 would allow qualified investors to easily and securely gain exposure to Bitcoin without worrying about wallets or private keys. The ETF was authorized by Comissão de Valores Mobiliários (CVM, Brazil’s Securities and Exchange Commission) and the Brazilian Stock Exchange (B3).

“With this safeguard, investors gain even more legal certainty to add Bitcoin to their portfolios in the most professional way possible. But, more importantly, the QBTC11 places Brazil at the epicenter of the most modern financial regulation,” QR Capital added.

QR Capital added that QBTC11 will track the CME CF Bitcoin Reference Rate, a crypto-focused index created by derivatives giant CME Group and real-time price benchmark CF Benchmarks. The latter is also used by one of the three Bitcoin ETFs in Canada.

Paving the way for a US Bitcoin ETF

The firm noted that in addition to being the first 100% Bitcoin ETF in Latin America, QBTC11 is also the fourth of its kind in the world and comes just weeks after the launch of Canada's three Bitcoin ETFs.

QR Capital even suggested that QBTC11's approval could speed up the launch of a similar product in the United States, as it's certified by the CVM. "This is because the CVM, as well as the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), is an affiliated member of the International Organization of Securities Commissions,” QR Capital asserted.

Indeed, while several Bitcoin ETF proposals have been filed with the US SEC over the past few years, the regulator has turned them all down on the grounds that nobody has yet managed to convincingly demonstrate that Bitcoin is inherently resistant to manipulation.

The latest attempt at a US Bitcoin ETF comes from global investment firm VanEck, filed yesterday. From filing, the SEC has 45 days to either accept or deny the firm's application.