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Bitcoin ETF Approval Window Opens: SEC Could Approve 12 Applications in November

Last Updated November 9, 2023 12:52 PM
Josh Adams
Last Updated November 9, 2023 12:52 PM
Key Takeaways
  • BlackRock filed its application for a spot Bitcoin ETF in June.
  • Since then, a wave of applications have joined it.
  • Now, two prominent analysts say we could see approvals this month.

The cryptocurrency market is buzzing with anticipation as a key approval window for spot Bitcoin exchange-traded funds (ETFs) opened yesterday. 

Analysts at Bloomberg Intelligence believe the window could see a flood of approvals from the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in November for several proposed spot Bitcoin ETFs.

90% Chance of Approval Before Jan 10

In a research note  published on November 8, analysts James Seyffart and Eric Balchunas suggested the next 8 days are crucial, stating:

“We still believe 90% chance by Jan 10 for spot #Bitcoin ETF approvals. But if it comes earlier we are entering a window where a wave of approval orders for all the current applicants *COULD* occur.”

Twelve fund managers have applications pending with the SEC, including major players like Grayscale, Ark Invest, and BlackRock. The agency faced deadlines on several proposals starting November 9, marking the beginning of the collective approval period.

According to Seyffart and Balchunas: “A brief window opens on November 9 for the SEC to potentially approve all 12 US spot ETF applicants, including Grayscale’s GBTC. It will be open for at least eight days. Even if approvals don’t arrive this month, we still believe there’s a 90% chance of approval by January 10.”

While approvals are not guaranteed, optimism stems from recent wins in court. In particular, Grayscale’s victory in its lawsuit against the SEC was seen as a turning point, compelling the agency to re-evaluate Grayscale’s application. The regulator had previously denied its attempt to convert GBTC to a ETF. A judge overruled that decision.

The SEC had previously approved a futures Bitcoin ETF. If the regulator gives the green-light, these would be the first spot Bitcoin ETFs in the United States. he Euronext Amsterdam stock exchange listed Europe’s first-ever spot bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) back in August.

A U.S approval would allow mainstream investors easy exposure to bitcoin without owning the volatile asset directly. It could also boost liquidity and price discovery as ETFs create additional routes for investment.

SEC Dragging Its Feet

Other spot Bitcoin ETF hopefuls include WisdomTree, Global X, Bitwise, and 21Shares. The pending applications signify the immense appetite for a spot bitcoin ETF product. Yet the SEC continues to drag its feet, frustrating industry insiders.

The market awaits a response as the window opened yesterday remains open until at least November 17th, according to the analysts. While Seyffart and Balchunas believe approvals could still come this month, they maintain a high chance of the SEC greenlighting spot bitcoin ETFs by January 10th even if no action is taken in the current window.

Bitcoin’s price has been buoyant following the analysts’ comments. The cryptocurrency is up nearly 4% over the past 24-hours, according to CoinMarketCap .

The door is open, but will the SEC walk through? With other nations approving spot bitcoin ETFs, and big financial names among the applicant list, many argue the agency is running out of reasons to deny applicants.

An approval would unleash a flood of institutional money and provide a major boost to bitcoin’s reputation and value. Most observers expect a big and positive price movement on approval.

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