The miracle expected by the bulls did not happen, as the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) rejected several applications for the registration of traded Bitcoin ETF funds. Among the "losers" were ProShares, Direxion, and GraniteShares.
What is an ETF and why is there so much noise around this investment tool? The ETF is a tradable index fund based on Bitcoin. The introduction of this tool to the crypto market is a significant step in the evolution of digital currencies to a legitimate asset class. The essence of the process is quite simple: the company that owns the Bitcoins registers the ETF fund and offers market participants to buy shares of the portfolio, which tracks the profitability of a certain asset (in this case, Bitcoin). The expected income is possible both for long-term investments and for intraday trading.
An important role here is played by the competence of the fund managers, their ability to keep the ETF balance at the market level and to ensure the safety of asset storage. Only in the U.S., the volume of the ETF market is estimated at $3 trillion.
The prospects of ETF drew the attention of the twin brothers Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss, as they were among the first to try to register a Bitcoin-tied exchange investment fund BATS Global Exchange (BZX), but, like others, they received a refusal from the SEC.
How does the prospect of introducing the ETF scare the SEC and at the same time inspire the participants of the crypto market? In their official conclusions accompanying the refusals, the Securities and Exchange Commission refers to the lack of regulation of the crypto market, the high risk of manipulation, as well as a number of rules of the Commission's work, which many companies are not yet able to observe (for example, providing reliable measures to protect against fraud).
Crypto enthusiasts, in turn, are confident that the emergence of Bitcoin index funds will attract traditional investors to crypto assets, which will undoubtedly develop the market to a positive trend and lead to a rapid rise in the cost of the flagship crypto, and of other altcoins beyond.
It is likely that the SEC is eyeing the companies, and eventually, the endorsement of the ETF will be obtained by some that fully agree to the Commission's regulatory mechanisms, including providing user data and monitoring that prevents market manipulation.
The Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) has such chances, as it also filed an application for ETF with the SEC and now its consideration is postponed until September 30. But even the giant CBOE may be too optimistic in expecting the appearance of the first exchange-traded funds for Bitcoins in the current year. "The question with a futures-based ETF is, what is the right level of liquidity?" says CBOE’s own operating director, Chris Concannon. "It’s never been tested before."
The likelihood that on September 30, the SEC will suddenly approve the decision proposed by the CBOE tends to the area of negative numbers. Despite the fact that a significant share of the market is well aware of this, this news can negatively affect the rate of Bitcoin, as it was with the refusal of the Winklevoss brothers’ ETF (the news back then tumbled Bitcoin down from the eight-thousand level). If the miracle that the bulls are so eagerly waiting for actually happens, we have a chance of witnessing a historic breakthrough in crypto economics, multi-billion-dollar influxes, and the rapid growth of altcoins and Bitcoin.