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SEC Delays Decision on VanEck Bitcoin Spot ETF Application by 45 Days

2 mins
Updated by Kyle Baird
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In Brief

  • The SEC has delayed the decision on VanEck's spot bitcoin ETF by 45 days.
  • VanEck filed the application in July 2022 and has made multiple similar applications in the past.
  • The SEC has cited market manipulation and a lack of investor protection as reasons behind rejecting spot ETF applications.
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The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has delayed a bitcoin spot ETF application by VanEck, pushing back the decision by 45 days.

The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has delayed its ruling on the bitcoin spot ETF application by VanEck, according to a filing submitted on August 24. The SEC is extending the decision on the application by another 45-day period.

Ostensibly, the SEC wants more time to decide where the spot ETF application should be approved, but past rulings do not indicate that a favorable outcome is likely. The agency has rejected several spot ETF applications in the past, including a VanEck bitcoin spot ETF application last year. VanEck filed this new application for bitcoin spot ETF in July, about eight months after that rejected application.

The delay on this VanEck Bitcoin Trust will aggravate the firm and market enthusiasts, who have been clamoring for approval. They argue that this will add some legitimacy to the market and actually prevent some of the concerns that the SEC is worried about.

Those concerns include market manipulation and a lack of investor protection, which the SEC has time and again highlighted as being barriers to a bitcoin spot ETF approval. That hasn’t stopped VanEck, one of the oldest ETF providers, from attempting to launch a bitcoin ETF on multiple occasions.

In this filing, the SEC said,

“The Commission finds that it is appropriate to designate a longer period within which to take action on the proposed rule change so that it has sufficient time to consider the proposed rule change and the issues raised therein.”

The SEC has, in fact, approved futures ETFs, which it seems more than willing to do. VanEck itself has had a bitcoin futures ETF launch in October 2021, joining ProShares as one of the first to release a futures ETF for the asset.

The lack of approval for a bitcoin spot ETF has led to some more serious incidents. Grayscale saw its request for a conversion of the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust into a pot ETF rejected by the SEC. In response, the firm sued the agency quickly, and the lawsuit is expected sometime between Q3 2023 and Q1 2024.

It may be a while before the crypto market sees its first bitcoin spot ETF. Regulation may help make this a reality, but that too may take some time.

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Rahul Nambiampurath
Rahul Nambiampurath's cryptocurrency journey first began in 2014 when he stumbled upon Satoshi's Bitcoin whitepaper. With a bachelor's degree in Commerce and an MBA in Finance from Sikkim Manipal University, he was among the few that first recognized the sheer untapped potential of decentralized technologies. Since then, he has helped DeFi platforms like Balancer and Sidus Heroes — a web3 metaverse — as well as CEXs like Bitso (Mexico's biggest) and Overbit to reach new heights with his...
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