Approval for Non-futures-based Bitcoin ETF ‘Still a Year off’ – Expert
A senior analyst in the exchange-traded fund (ETF) space thinks that a bitcoin (BTC) offering is on its way this year – but has suggested that it will be of the kind not favored by the crypto space. And as for the elusive “right kind” of bitcoin ETF? Well, we may have to wait another 12 months for that.
In a video interview with Yahoo Finance, Dave Nadig, the CIO and Director of Research for ETF Trends, explained:
“I do think we’re going to end up with a futures-based bitcoin ETF sometime this year. The SEC has made it clear that's the direction they want the industry to go.”
However, he added a caveat that the crypto sector will not welcome, explaining:
“I think an actual bitcoin ETF that sort of acts like a Gold Exchange-traded Fund for Bitcoin, I think that’s probably now at least a year off.”
Gold Exchange-traded Funds track the price of gold, whereby each share in the fund corresponds directly to a specific amount of gold. A BTC ETF, in its true sense, would seek to do the same thing with bitcoin. Such financial products have been approved in Canada and Europe, but gaining regulatory approval for them has proven tricky for American firms looking to launch them.
Numerous applications have been lodged, but the regulatory Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has thus far failed to approve any of them. The SEC head Gary Gensler earlier this month indicated that “there are a number of mutual funds that invest in bitcoin futures on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME),” noting that he “looked forward” to the SEC’s “review of such filings, particularly if those are limited to these CME-traded bitcoin futures.”
VanEck, one of the many firms that have been banging on the SEC’s door with BTC ETF applications, at the time called futures-based bitcoin ETFs “inferior products that have consistently underperformed the bitcoin price and bring additional complexities in regards to how they must be managed.”
But Nadig’s comments appear to indicate that wheels are already in motion in the bitcoin futures ETF sector – and that an SEC green-light could be forthcoming in the coming months.
He also opined that the “best” investors “can do in a traditional ETF” if they are looking to put their money into crypto “is to invest in the companies that are actually driving this digital transformation.”
He said such firms “are either bringing crypto onto their balance sheets as a kind of proxy for direct investment as an investor, or “like Coinbase and Square,” are “really helping drive the ecosystem forward.”