In brief

  • The SEC has again delayed the VanEck Bitcoin Trust filing, this time asking the public several key questions about the market.
  • An approved Bitcoin ETF has been heralded as a key milestone for the leading cryptocurrency.

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has delayed its decision on VanEck’s Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF), called the VanEck Bitcoin Trust. 

This is the second time this week that the Commission has pushed back a decision on a Bitcoin ETF. On June 15, the SEC postponed its decision on Kryptoin's ETF filing.

The SEC has yet to approve any Bitcoin ETF, with chairpeople frequently citing manipulation and a lack of transparency in the crypto market as key reasons. A Bitcoin ETF has been heralded as crucial for the continued acceptance of the asset class. It would offer traditional investors less familiar with cryptocurrencies a regulated and conventional means of gaining exposure to Bitcoin. 


On this occasion, the SEC has also asked the public to comment on several key questions related to the VanEck filing. 

The Commission asks whether the filing would be vulnerable to manipulation; if the public believes the cryptocurrency industry has changed since 2016; if VanEck’s filing has curtailed any possibility of manipulation; and if Bitcoin is transparent.

The public has the next 20 days to file any comments on the above. Commenters can make submissions electronically via the Commission’s portal. Post and email are also accepted means, according to the SEC.

VanEck’s Bitcoin ETF journey

VanEck’s first filing came in June 2018 with its VanEck SolidX Bitcoin trust. The company eventually withdrew this filing in September 2019. 

The New York-based investment manager refiled a new application in December 2020, called the VanEck Bitcoin Trust. In March 2021, VanEck then proposed an amendment to the filing. 


The SEC delayed this filing in April 2021, according to a statement from the Commission. Yesterday's announcement is the second delay of the same filing.

The VanEck Bitcoin Trust would trade shares that reflect the performance of the MVIS CryptoCompare Bitcoin Benchmark Rate. This rate is a U.S. dollar value that tracks the median price of Bitcoin across five exchanges. These kinds of price aggregators are often used whenever a fund manager or exchange is looking to build a financial product and needs a reliable price tracker. 

Shares of the trust would trade on the Cboe BZX Exchange, according to the filing. The filing did not cite a specific custodian that would hold the underlying Bitcoin in the Trust. 

Though many have said 2021 would be the year the SEC approves a Bitcoin ETF, the Commission continues to proceed with extreme caution. 


The views and opinions expressed by the author are for informational purposes only and do not constitute financial, investment, or other advice.

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