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Bitcoin ETF Update: US SEC Delays Decision on Bitwise BTC ETF

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The Securities and Exchange Commission of the United States has yet again delayed the decision to be made regarding the Bitwise Bitcoin ETF.

The Securities and Exchange Commission of the United States has yet again delayed the decision to be made regarding the Bitwise Bitcoin ETF. The updated was released in a filing published on the 14th of May by the Securities and Exchange Commission.

 

Securities and Exchange Commission delays Bitcoin ETF decision:

In the filing published by the SEC, they revealed that the commission has yet again delayed its decision on the approval or disapproval of the Bitcoin ETF application filed by the crypto index fund provider Bitwise Asset Management. Also, the SEC has requested the interested parties to provide public comment which includes written submission of their personal views, any data, and arguments related to the issues identified and also other concerns that they may have with the proposed ETF.

 

Bitwise filed for the current Bitcoin ETF in February this year with the condition that the SEC would make a decision on approving or disapproving the same within 45 days of the application. At that time, Bitwise reportedly said that the current Bitcoin ETF application was different and better than the previous proposed BTC ETFs considering all the previous drawbacks. The company said that their BTC ETF would draw the prices from a lot of top crypto exchanges rather than just a few so that the market is represented better.

 

However, the Bitcoin ETF decision was delayed by the SEC in March and the Commission was thereafter obligated to make a final decision by the 16th of May 2019.

 

What Now?

As per the filing made by the SEC today, the public commenting period will go on for three weeks after the recent amendments done to the Bitcoin ETF application filed by Bitwise are published in the Federal Register which shall then be followed by 2 weeks for the public response

#Bitcoin

Alert: The Last Chance to Buy Cheap Bitcoin: BTC to the Moon!

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It is an amazing time to be getting into bitcoin right now. We have seen this massive retracement, a lot of support and a decent amount of volume at the current level of bitcoin. There are a lot of things going on in the background that makes us incredibly bullish about bitcoin.

Chinese bitcoin billionaire Zhao Dong says “buy bitcoin now, when no one really cares”.

When the price of bitcoin is at extreme highs, most people are paying attention. Now that it’s gone down, there is fear, depression, and anger. This is the time to think counterintuitively to the crowd and there are a lot of people who are doing that right now.

Zhao goes on to say “I don’t persuade people to buy bitcoin because it seems easy to make quick money but in fact, it is not”. He says “now is the bear market and this is the time I start to talk people into buying bitcoin”.

 

Fairfax County invests in Crypto Fund

Recently we saw two public pensions from Fairfax County Virginia, police officer retirement system and employee retirement system investing in Morgan Creek’s $40 million crypto fund. That important because when pension funds start investing, it sends a signal to other pension funds to follow them.

Institutional investors are already here and they are only going to rise now. Michael Novogratz has come out saying that the markets won’t go to $20 trillion right away. He said what is going to happen is that one of these pension funds who is a market leader is going to say “We’ve got custody, Goldman Sachs is involved, Bloomberg has an index and I can track my performance against them”. And then the others are going to buy. This is the same type FOMO that we saw in retail and it will be demonstrated in institutional investors. Maybe, Mike Novogratz is absolutely right at this. The institutional investors will trickle in and then it is going to be a tsunami wave with trillions of dollars.

Barry Silbert came out and said that he is convinced of whatever money is in gold is not going to stay in gold. He said, “that get’s handed out to millennials, I am highly confident that a lot of that money will go into bitcoin”.

Maybe Barry is also right as bitcoin is gold for the new generations. Bitcoin is the new technology and the new investment vehicle. According to the numbers we are seeing, we see a massive amount of interest coming from the younger age groups primarily with the older age groups being suspicious of things that they don’t quite understand.

 

Goldman Sachs OTC Desk:

Goldman Sach’s bitcoin OTC desk is one of the largest facilitators of OTC trades in the world is seeming to provide evidence that ultra high net worth individuals, hedge funds and other financial entities are indeed trafficking in bitcoin. In the background, they are buying, selling, holding in cold storage and doing wallet to wallet transactions. Bitcoin is increasingly being seen as a vehicle of wealth, a store of value and a time of global uncertainty.

According to sources at Goldman Sachs, they see particularly that the people who come to them trust Goldman Sachs. The fact that Goldman Sachs is making this available says a lot to all these different investors who are coming in. They saw Goldman Sachs investing in Circle and other bitcoin-related firms and the investors are increasingly becoming comfortable with digital currencies. The narrative that bitcoin is digital gold has begun to take hold in the minds of investors. This has led to increased volumes we have been seeing in 2018 and throughout the beginning of 2019. If the global economy continues to soften, we can, of course, expect those volumes to continue to increase.

Another source at Goldman Sachs said that the OTC volumes have increased across the board, global economic uncertainty and a flight to safety now includes bitcoin. This news is from the people inside the OTC desk who are dealing with these high net worth individuals. The source goes on to say that this is why we are seeing an increase in volume year by year. Goldman Sachs is a major player here, they have got the first mover priveledges at Circle because of their equity stake in the firm. So they are more effective from a pricing standpoint than other large bank facilitators. The clients of Goldman Sachs know this and this increases the confidence in the firm as a safe place to funnel investment dollars into digital assets like bitcoin.

 

Bitcoin ETF:

SEC commissioner Robert J. Jackson recently did an interview with Congressional Quarterly and expressed views that an SEC-approved bitcoin ETF is inevitable. Add into that, that we now have the SEC review of a bitcoin ETF rule change proposed by the New York Stock Exchange and the Bitwise Asset Management. They are reviewing a rule change to the bitcoin ETF. An SEC approved bitcoin ETF is just a question of time now. When the bitcoin ETF launches, it is going to be a major source of liquidity and will bring even more new investors in.

We might see that time coming soon when regular individuals will not be able to own even one bitcoin. A lot of people are speculating that the same thing is going to happen to bitcoin when bitcoin ETF will launch as it happened to gold when the gold ETF was launched. There is a good chance that history could indeed repeat for digital gold.

gold-price-chart

gold-price-chart

Then, of course, there is a falling supply emission. The next halving for bitcoin is only a year away and a little more than a decade, the block reward for bitcoin will be below 1 BTC per block. It depicts how quickly bitcoin is going to become scarce.

 

What are your thoughts on the future of bitcoin? Tell us in the comments section below.

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#Bakkt

Bakkt: Huge Budget for 2019: Taking Bitcoin to the Moon?

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The Intercontinental Exchange which is the company behind Bakkt has said that they are planning to spend around $20 million to $25 million on Bakkt in 2019.

The Intercontinental Exchange which is the company behind Bakkt has said that they are planning to spend around $20 million to $25 million on Bakkt in 2019 which is a whole lot of money. Bakkt raised $182 million at the end of 2018 from some of the biggest venture capital firms and corporations who believe in the mission that Bakkt is trying to achieve and ICE is really serious about bringing Bakkt to life. They are currently gobbling up some of the best talents in the crypto space.

Even though we have seen Bakkt’s future contracts being delayed twice, this is somewhat because the CFTC was shut down during the US government shutdown and they are the ones who are going to decide when the Bakkt futures contracts are allowed to happen. Time will tell when exactly Bakkt’s futures get launched but they are surely coming. It’s just a matter of when and not a question of if.

 

Bakkt: Not just Futures Contracts

It’s also worth remembering that Bakkt is much more than futures contracts. Bakkt is about buying, selling, storing and spending digital assets such as bitcoin. They are looking at payment integrations with companies like Starbucks. We see the interest from giant corporations that are getting into it and they surely know the future of technology and Bakkt could really be a very important piece of that future infrastructure.

They are looking at regulated trading, regulated clearinghouse and a regulated warehouse or custody of cryptocurrencies. All of these things are very important especially for institutional investors and hedge funds. Custody equation will be very important for many people in the crypto world. They are literally some institutions who are prohibited from investing in things like bitcoin via their own charters or local regulations. That’s why they need to have these paper products like Bitcoin Futures, Bitcoin ETF or some kind of safe custody which is what Bakkt is setting up.

 

Bakkt Investment: A Moonshot Bet

The CEO of ICE Jeffrey C. Sprecher came out to say that the investment in Bakkt is their moonshot bet. He said that it is not a typical ICE product and it is not what they normally do and they see huge potential in it. They are not only spending millions of dollars in making this happen but a lot of time and energy as well. The likelihood of success is extremely high and the likelihood of this paying off in huge dividends for the Intercontinental Exchange is very real.

He also said that Bakkt is surely coming but later this year so there is yet another delay. It’s not all their fault by any means. There are external circumstances which are making it hard to have that full regulation. Without the regulators sitting in their offices working makes a lot harder to make these visions become reality.

 

Wall Street:

Wall Street is a real mixed bag and ICE is the representation or inside player and they are the ones launching Bakkt. So Wall Street is surely coming to the party. But it is worth understanding that we really don’t need Wall Street at the cryptocurrency party but they are coming regardless of whether we want them or not. Futures contracts are already happening and we are surely going to have more of them. Bitcoin ETF and different traded paper products are surely going to happen soon and it’s inevitable.

Because of the money, serious professionals backing it, their insider connections and the trust factor of the Intercontinental Exchange and the New York Stock Exchange Bakkt, Bakkt is surely going to be huge. According to unconfirmed reports, huge companies like JP Morgan are looking at looking at Bakkt for their cryptocurrency trades.

It is worth noting that apart from Bakkt, there are other big players entering into the crypto industry too. We have Fidelity which is also going to be a big player when it comes down it. All of this is coming together around the same time. 2019 is surely going to be a very exciting year in terms of cryptocurrencies and the fundamental things that are happening in the background.

 

What do you think about the future of Bakkt? Tell us in the comments section below.

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#Bitcoin

Bitcoin ETF: Van Eck BTC ETF withdrawn

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CBOE has withdrawn its application to list to Van Eck SolidX Bitcoin ETF on its exchange. According to a document published by the SEC yesterday.

CBOE has withdrawn its application to list to Van Eck SolidX Bitcoin ETF on its exchange. According to a document that was published by the Securities and Exchange Commission yesterday that they have indeed withdrawn their application to list physically backed bitcoin ETF.

CBOE is one of the homes of bitcoin futures contracts. CBOE chief came out and said that he sees the lack of traditional market-tracking index and futures contracts that most Wall Street investors use to hedge their bets as a limiting factor in the crypto market. Regulation is demanded by many companies and players before getting into crypto. He goes on to say that they have two regulators that are not taking calls right now, it doesn’t mean there is nothing they are interested in, it means that nothing is going to happen in this government shutdown.

 

Bitcoin Futures

Bitcoin futures contracts are not supremely popular actually. The CBOE only has 3475 contracts in open interest compared to 5038 back in January 2018. When we look at these versus the figures of CBOE’s volatility index of 370,000 contracts and bitcoin equals only 1% of the total trading activity compared to CBOE’s most traded product. This is something to keep in mind when we talk about futures contracts and how they are moving the markets back and forth.

Back late last year, we saw 9 different Bitcoin ETF being declined by the SEC including very high offerings from Gemini and SolidX. Regulators came out and said that there is a lack of control over the crypto markets and this has been the primary concern of the authorities in basically letting any of these applications go through but they are still trying. Even though the CBOE has removed their application to list a certain Bitcoin ETF, that is not the end of things by any means.

The Winklevoss twins from Gemini are still trying. Recently they said that they are committed as ever to making a Bitcoin ETF a reality. They said that bitcoin is a better asset than gold. They said that bitcoin is being better at being gold than gold and if they are right then over time the market cap of bitcoin will surpass the 7 trillion market cap of gold. The Winklevoss twins have been big believers in bitcoin for a long time.

 

Bitwise Bitcoin ETF:

Bitwise has submitted another Bitcoin ETF filing to the United States SEC. This is probably a terrible time to put the submission in as it could sit on the desk somewhere for months due to the government shutdown. Bitwise’s previous Bitcoin ETF filing was among those that were rejected by the SEC back in 2018.

The Global Research Cheif of Bitwise has said that the SEC has asked thoughtful and relevant questions of the quality of the crypto trading ecosystem, the liability of crypto pricing, the strength of the arbitrary function in crypto and the robustness of crypto custody. According to him, they have spent the past year researching these questions and look forward to discussing those findings with the SEC staff in connection with the filing and listing application. A key difference with their new filing versus their previous filing is that it uses a third party custody service. He also that while there can be no assurance that the 19B4 application will be granted or the SEC will ultimately accelerate the registration statement, they are optimistic that 2019 should be the year that a Bitcoin ETF launches.

 

Bakkt Exchange:

Bakkt is still not giving up on their bitcoin dreams by any means. They are going to be launching a cryptocurrency exchange, a payment processor and their futures contracts which may be approved by the CFTC which are just one small element. If Bakkt launches a Bitcoin ETF it may be approved by the SEC. A lot of what Bakkt wants to do needs approval and its really unfortunate that we are seeing this government shut down happening and it means that the approval is not forthcoming.

 

While all of this dysfunction continues, its actually a very great time to buy bitcoin at cheap prices because if tomorrow a Bitcoin ETF is approved that is going to affect the price of bitcoin to a great extent.

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