Renewed Optimism and Wave of Filings Triggered by BlackRock’s Bitcoin Spot ETF

Renewed Optimism as Investment Firms File for Spot Bitcoin ETFs, Triggering New Wave of Applications

Following BlackRock’s recent application for its own spot Bitcoin ETF on June 15, at least two investment firms have swiftly followed suit by filing new applications for similar products. This surge in filings indicates a renewed sense of optimism in the market for regulated Bitcoin ETFs.

WisdomTree, a New York-based asset management fund, is among the latest firms to submit a filing for a spot Bitcoin ETF. In its June 21 filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), WisdomTree requested permission to list its “WisdomTree Bitcoin Trust” on the Cboe BZX Exchange, under the ticker symbol “BTCW.”

Notably, WisdomTree has previously applied for a spot Bitcoin ETF twice, with both applications being rejected by the SEC. The regulator cited concerns of fraud and market manipulation. WisdomTree currently oversees around $83 billion in assets.

A key distinction in BlackRock’s filing is its intention to establish a “surveillance sharing agreement” with the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) futures markets. BlackRock’s proposal references the SEC’s approval of a Bitcoin futures fund by Teucrium, which highlighted the CME’s comprehensive surveillance of futures market conditions to detect and prevent price distortions caused by manipulative efforts.

WisdomTree’s filing echoes this sentiment and expresses willingness to enter into a similar surveillance agreement with a U.S.-based spot trading platform for Bitcoin.

Shortly after WisdomTree’s application, global investment manager Invesco “reactivated” its own application for a similar product. In its filing, Invesco requested that the SEC permit the listing of its “Invesco Galaxy Bitcoin ETF” on the Cboe BZX exchange. The filing emphasizes that a spot Bitcoin ETF utilizing professional custodians and service providers eliminates the need for investors to rely on loosely regulated offshore vehicles, providing greater protection for their principal Bitcoin investments.

While the SEC is yet to approve a spot Bitcoin ETF, the recent developments have generated renewed enthusiasm. Bloomberg senior ETF analyst Eric Balchunas noted that BlackRock’s entry has injected new life into the race for Bitcoin ETF approvals, highlighting the firm’s successful track record of securing ETF approvals from the regulator.

In addition to WisdomTree and Invesco, rumors are circulating that Fidelity Investments, a multi-trillion-dollar fund manager overseeing $4.9 trillion in assets, may also explore opportunities in the spot Bitcoin ETF market. While there is no official confirmation yet, industry observers speculate that Fidelity might file its own application or potentially make an offer for Grayscale’s GBTC ETF product.

CryptoGrafos reached out to Fidelity for comment but did not receive an immediate response.

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