SEC Clears VanEck to Launch Bitcoin Futures ETF Next Week

Oct 20, 2021 | Decrypt News | 0 comments


A new Bitcoin futures exchange-traded fund (ETF) is set to start trading on Wall Street next week, according to a Wednesday SEC filing. 

New York-based asset management firm VanEck’s Bitcoin Strategy ETF will go live on the New York Stock Exchange after October 23, the filing said. 

Trading of VanEck’s ETF will begin “as soon as practicable after the effective date,” which likely means Monday, October 25. 

The first Bitcoin-related ETF in the U.S. launched yesterday—and was hugely popular: ProShares’ Bitcoin Strategy ETF traded $280 million-worth of shares in 20 minutes. By the end of the trading day, nearly $1 billion had been traded. 

VanEck’s product will be the same type of ETF—one that gives investors exposure to the world’s biggest cryptocurrency by allowing them to trade shares that represent contracts betting on the price of Bitcoin. 

“Futures contracts are financial contracts the value of which depends on, or is derived from, the underlying reference asset,” the filing read. “In the case of Bitcoin Futures, the underlying reference asset is Bitcoin.”

It added: “Bitcoin and Bitcoin Futures have historically been more volatile than traditional asset classes. You should be prepared to lose your entire investment.”

VanEck (and a whole list of other companies) have applied to the SEC for a spot Bitcoin ETF that gives investors direct exposure to the asset. But the SEC has repeatedly said no, citing concerns that the Bitcoin market can be easily manipulated. In August, however, SEC Chairman Gary Gensler signaled that the Commission would be open to approving futures-based ETFs, likely because the futures market is regulated by the CFTC.

On Friday, ProShares filed a post-effective prospectus with the SEC, indicating that the Commission would allow the first-ever Bitcoin futures ETF to begin trading this week. VanEck filed the same type of document today, which means the SEC has likewise given the firm the green light to launch its fund.

These Bitcoin Futures ETFs May Be Next to Launch

While not a “true” Bitcoin ETF, investors are seemingly still interested in a futures ETF. These types of funds still provide investors with exposure to cryptocurrency without having to buy, sell and store it themselves—which can be tricky for those not familiar with exchanges or wallets. 

The SEC is expected to approve another four Bitcoin futures ETFs in the coming weeks: the Invesco Bitcoin Strategy ETF, Valkyrie Bitcoin Strategy ETF, the Galaxy Bitcoin Strategy ETF, and AdvisorShares Managed Bitcoin ETF.

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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