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Skeptic’s lens: The elephant in the room for approving a Bitcoin ETF

A Bitcoin ETF has long been the Holy Grail of the crypto world — but don’t hold your breath on it.

Since the Winklevoss twins filed their first ETF application, which was also the first application to be rejected by the SEC in early 2017, it’s been a central point of discussion in the market. 

The SEC rejected a second attempt for a Winklevoss ETF in July and released a 92-page order detailing its decision. The lengthy rejection can be summarized with these three points:

  • Bitcoin derivatives markets do not have significant volume to support an ETF
  • Lack of qualified custodial offerings (regulated third-party custodians)
  • Means of compliance to prevent fraudulent and manipulative acts are not sufficient

The decision was supported by three commissioners with a dissent coming from Hester Peirce who said that the decision undermines investor protection by precluding greater institutionalization of the bitcoin market and demonstrates a skeptical view of innovation.

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