Bitcoin ETF: SEC Chairman Posses “hard questions” – Here’s Why an ETF is Significant

September 10th, 2019

The wait for the ever delayed approval for a Bitcoin ETF (Exchange Traded Product) could get even longer. On Monday, SEC chairman Jay Clayton noted that they are still concerned about a few things.

Nevertheless, a firm ‘YES’ to the answer on the progress of Bitcoin ETF was reassuring for the future. He said,

We’re engaging on this, but there are a couple of things about it that we need to feel comfortable with. The first is custody: custody is a long-standing requirement in our markets, and if you say you have something you really have it.

The second and most pressing concern was the issue of ‘ market manipulation.’ Despite, progress for institutional investors, a large number of retail investors still trade on spot exchanges. Reportedly, these exchanges are involved in all kinds of unethical trading practices. One of the biggest concerns of the market is ‘fake reported volume’ data.

He said,

An even harder question given that they trade on largely unregulated exchanges is how can we be sure that those prices aren’t subject to significant manipulation? People needed to answer these hard questions for us to be comfortable that this was the appropriate kind of product.

Why is an ETF Significant?

In 2019, the crypto markets have seen a lot of progress being made in the US for institutional investors. Beginning with Fidelity, the much anticipated Bakkt Futures will also go live on 23rd September.

Even VanEck, which has an ETF application pending with the SEC, recently launched a Trust Fund for interested investors.

Nevertheless, an ETF is still essential as futures trading and trust funds have limited adaptability in the market. ETF shares can be included in an average investor’s portfolio. It can also be included with mutual funds and other benefits.

The SEC is primarily concerned about the retail investor’s risk and security. Hence, it is taking a slow, calculated approach to it. Moreover, interestingly, the first Gold ETF, was launched in 2004. Given gold’s long-standing history, an ETF for Bitcoin could take a while longer.

As reported earlier on CoinGape, the SEC postponed the VanEck SolidX Bitcoin ETF proposal yet another time in May.

In September and October, it has to decide on three proposals, including Wilshire Phoenix’s United States Bitcoin and Treasury Investment Trust and Bitwise. In all likelihood, they are expected to be delayed.