SEC Meets with BlackRock and Nasdaq to Discuss Prospects of Spot Bitcoin ETF

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Leading asset management company, BlackRock, recently met with representatives from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and Nasdaq to discuss the possibility of listing a spot Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF). The firm presented its iShares Bitcoin Trust proposal, highlighting how it could employ either an in-kind or in-cash redemption model, although it conveyed a preference for the in-kind option.

SEC Nears Decision on Spot BTC ETF Listing

The SEC is currently nearing a crucial decision on whether to allow a spot BTC ETF to be listed on U.S. markets, with several firms, including BlackRock and Grayscale Investments, awaiting a response to their applications. In the recent past, SEC Chair Gary Gensler has criticized the commission’s inconsistent approach toward spot BTC products. Although it remains uncertain if Gensler will support crypto-linked investment vehicles on a large scale, the SEC has previously approved ETFs tied to Bitcoin and Ether futures.

Blackrock ETF Bitcoin model

Grayscale Investments Holds Meeting After Court Order

  • Court-mandated re-review of Grayscale’s ETF bid results in SEC meeting
  • BNY Mellon set to serve as transfer agent for shares of the trust
  • GBTC plans listing on NYSE Arca under symbol GBTC, subject to approval

Asset manager Grayscale Investments also held discussions with the SEC following a court order that mandated the regulatory authority to re-review the firm’s ETF bid. A memo published by the SEC revealed that officials from the commission’s division of trading and markets met with Grayscale to explore potential listing matters regarding the shares of the product. The court order came after a D.C. circuit court asserted its August ruling directing the SEC to re-review Grayscale’s application.

Last week, another memo revealed that Grayscale had agreed with the Bank of New York Mellon to have BNY Mellon serve as the transfer agent for shares of the trust. As per documents submitted on October 19, Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC) intends to list its shares on NYSE Arca under the symbol GBTC and issue new shares on an ongoing basis upon approval of its S-3 form and a separate 19b-4 filing from NYSE Arca.

Other Major Asset Managers Eye Spot Bitcoin ETFs

Aside from BlackRock, other major asset managers such as Fidelity are also assessing the potential benefits of spot bitcoin ETFs. Bloomberg Intelligence’s ETF Analyst, Eric Balchunas, tweeted recently that he’d heard rumors of other potential spot bitcoin ETF issuers meeting with the SEC over the past few weeks.

Nasdaq Proposed Rule Change Discussed

The meetings focused on proposed rule changes in relation to listing and trading shares of respective trusts. For instance, at the SEC meeting with BlackRock and Nasdaq representatives, discussions revolved around The NASDAQ Stock Market LLC’s suggested adjustment to list and trade shares of the iShares Bitcoin Trust under NASDAQ Rule 5711.

A Growing Demand for Accessible Crypto Investment Opportunities

As the crypto industry continues to expand, investors are seeking more accessible ways to invest in digital assets. Given the volatile nature of the cryptocurrency market, ETFs can offer somewhat stable investment opportunities while still granting exposure to sought-after digital currencies like bitcoin and ether.

Should the SEC approve more ETFs tied to these cryptocurrencies, especially spot BTC ETFs, a wider group of potential investors could pour into the market, leading to increased adoption and demand for digital assets. Thus, the outcomes of these meetings with BlackRock, Grayscale, and other potential issuers hold significant implications for the future of cryptocurrency investments in the United States.


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