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Uncertainty Looms as SEC Delays Ethereum ETF Approval Once Again

2 mins
Updated by Harsh Notariya
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In Brief

  • SEC delays decision on Hashdex, ARK 21Shares Ethereum ETFs to May.
  • Ethereum price drops 8% after delay, currently trading around $3,100.
  • Skepticism grows over Ethereum ETF approval; odds fall to 24%.
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The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has delayed its verdict on the Hashdex and ARK 21Shares spot Ethereum exchange-traded funds (ETFs).

Ethereum (ETH) enthusiasts have been eagerly keeping an eye on these developments as the final deadline approaches.

Ethereum ETF Approval Chances Drastically Decline

Announced on Tuesday, March 19, this postponement extends the decision period to late May. Specifically, the SEC has set May 24 and May 30 as the final decision dates for ARK 21Shares and Hashdex, respectively.

“The Commission finds that it is appropriate to designate a longer period within which to issue an order approving or disapproving the proposed rule change so that it has sufficient time to consider the proposed rule change and the issues raised therein,” the SEC said.

Following the SEC’s announcement, Ethereum’s price fell by about 8%, indicating the market’s sensitivity to regulatory decisions. Currently, Ethereum trades at around $3,100, reflecting the uncertainty surrounding the approval of its ETFs.

This delay affects several proposals for Ethereum ETFs, with notable submissions from industry giants such as BlackRock, Grayscale, and Fidelity. Recent sentiment has shifted, with analysts expressing skepticism about the likelihood of approval.

Read more: Ethereum ETF Explained: What It Is and How It Works

For instance, the ETF analyst James Seyffart has noted a troubling lack of engagement between the SEC and Ethereum ETF issuers. Contrasting with the proactive discussions around Bitcoin ETFs, this lack of dialogue has led to a more pessimistic outlook for Ethereum ETFs.

“​​My cautiously optimistic attitude for ETH ETFs has changed from recent months. We now believe these will ultimately be denied on May 23 for this round,” Seyffart posted.

Moreover, the odds of approval have diminished, with market predictions showing a significant decline in confidence. According to Polymarket, the likelihood of an Ethereum ETF approval in May has plummeted to 24%, a stark contrast to the 75% odds following the SEC’s approval of spot Bitcoin ETFs in January.

Chances of Ethereum ETF Approval in May
Chances of Ethereum ETF Approval in May. Source: Polymarket

Amid these developments, Coinbase has emerged as a vocal supporter of Ethereum ETFs. Last month, Paul Grewal, Coinbase’s chief legal officer, published a detailed letter outlining the rationale for approving an Ethereum ETF.

Read more: Ethereum (ETH) Price Prediction 2024/2025/2030

He emphasized Ethereum’s classification as a commodity, a view supported by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and various SEC and court decisions. This argument is part of a broader effort to demonstrate Ethereum’s market stability and viability as an ETF.

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Harsh Notariya
Harsh Notariya excels in delivering SEO-optimized crypto news under tight deadlines. Previously, as a Growth Marketer at Sporty and a Community Consultant at Totality Corp, he significantly boosted community engagement and followers. Harsh also crafted engaging content for top crypto influencer Shivam Chhuneja, blending meme references for an educational yet fun experience. His versatile skills make him a notable figure in crypto journalism.