SEC Chair Suggests Limited Scope for Bitcoin ETF Approvals; Delays Decision on BlackRock’s Spot Ethereum ETF
Crypto News – In a recent media briefing on January 24th, SEC Chair Gary Gensler emphasized that the approval of a spot Bitcoin ETF earlier this month should not be misconstrued as a broader approval for other cryptocurrencies. He specifically hinted that the agency is not currently considering the approval of an Ethereum ETF. This announcement comes amidst efforts by major financial institutions like BlackRock and Fidelity to secure approval for a spot Ethereum ETF.
During the briefing, Gensler stated: “As I said two weeks ago, that which we did with regard to bitcoin exchange traded products is cabined to this one commodity non-security and shouldn’t be read to be anything other than that.”
While Gensler’s comments may have dimmed hopes for an immediate Ethereum ETF approval, many cryptocurrency experts remain optimistic that such an approval could materialize later in the year. Some analysts have even suggested the possibility of approval as early as May 2024.
Furthermore, the US Securities and Exchange Commission has extended the decision deadline for BlackRock’s proposed spot Ethereum ETF to March 10. This extension allows the SEC additional time to thoroughly evaluate the proposal, and they may ultimately choose to approve, disapprove, or take further actions regarding the proposed fund.
BlackRock had initially submitted the proposal for its spot Ethereum ETF in November 2023, and Fidelity’s application for a spot Ethereum ETF is also currently facing delays, as reported by the SEC last week.
In addition to these ETF developments, the SEC continues to be involved in legal disputes with several prominent cryptocurrency firms, including Binance, Coinbase, and Ripple. These legal battles involve allegations of deceptive practices, failure to restrict US investors, unregistered exchange operations, and classification of certain tokens as securities. SEC Chair Gensler advised the investing public to exercise caution when considering investments in crypto securities, stressing the importance of receiving appropriate disclosures, especially from compliant token operators.