SEC Postpones VanEck Bitcoin ETF Decision Until February

The Securities and Exchange Commission has extended the deadline to make a decision on VanEck’s bitcoin ETF (exchange traded fund) application. Due to the bearish attitude of digital asset market, the delay was largely estimated. The decision is postponed until February 27, 2019.

SEC has declared the delay in an announcement stating, “The Commission finds it appropriate to designate a longer period within which to issue an order approving or disapproving the proposed rule change so that it has sufficient time to consider this proposed rule change.” Notably, the original proposal was submitted on July 2, 2018.

Before the announcement, VanEck’s director of digital asset strategy, Gabor Gurbacs seemed confident about SEC’s approval of the investment firm’s bitcoin ETF application. He believed that the approval for the same was around the corner.

Gurbacs said that it is reasonably certain that America wants a bitcoin ETF. He added, “We think that we’ve met all market structure obstacles and requirements on pricing, custody, valuation, and safekeeping, so we are cautiously optimistic.”

The SEC has a very strict approach so far, reasonably. Reportedly, in August 2018, the SEC rejected nine applications of Bitcoin ETF, noting the applicants’ inability to demonstrate how they could prevent fraud and market manipulation. Infect, in the past, SEC declined applications from the Winklevoss twins, Tyler and Cameron for bitcoin ETF. Even after the rejection, the Winklevoss twins remain optimistic about the application.

While most crypto space is skeptical about bitcoin ETF, Larry Fink, the CEO of BlackRock has expressed his views in this. He said that the firm would not launch a bitcoin exchange-traded fund until crypto becomes “legitimate.” He stated, “I wouldn’t say never — when it’s legitimate, yes.”

Fink added “It will ultimately have to be backed by a government. I don’t sense that any government will allow that unless they have a sense of where that money’s going.”

Because of its decentralized nature, Fink said that he is concerned about the possibility of scams, money-laundering, and tax evasion, considering the fact that crypto market is anonymous and largely unregulated.

Author: Ruti Vora
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Stock Market Giant Nasdaq and VanEck Will Offer Bitcoin Futures

The world’s second largest stock exchange Nasdaq has announced partnership with U.S. investment firm VanEck aiming at bringing a host of new regulated cryptocurrency financial products to market, including Bitcoin futures.

CoinDesk reported that the partnership was officially unveiled during Consensus: Invest conference. The move to “bring a regulated crypto 2.0 futures-type contract” to the market was announced by Gabor Gurbacs, VanEck’s director of digital asset strategy.

Soon after, Gabor Gurbacs took to Twitter to say the partnership is between Nasdaq and VanEck’s MVIS Indices. Its intention is to bring to market transparent, regulated and surveilled digital assets products, such as Bitcoin futures contracts.

In his tweet, Gabor Gurbacs indicates that new products will use Nasdaq’s SMARTS Market Surveillance system, a cross-market, cross-asset, multi-venue surveillance tool that correlates real-time and historical data with detection patterns to trace illegal market activities such as spoofing and wash trading.

More details are expected to be revealed soon, however, Gurbacs said that upcoming products could be thought of as an “upgrade” to current regulatory standards that surround Bitcoin futures.

Describing SMARTS as a “big policeman engine,” Gurbacs insists the technology would ensure Bitcoin futures trading “in a fair and orderly fashion.”

As of today, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) has approved two Bitcoin futures products – one operated by the Chicago Board Options Exchange in partnership with Gemini Exchange and the other operated by the Chicago Mercantile Exchange in partnership with Crypto Facilities.

These futures contracts are cash-settled, meaning that at expiration no “physical” bitcoins need to be moved in order to settle accounts.

A rival Bitcoin futures product by Bakkt is expected to be launched in January 2019 and will be physically-settled, meaning investors holding these contracts at expiration would receive payment in BTC.

As of press time, it has not been confirmed whether the Nasdaq/VanEck’s futures contract will be cash-backed, or physically settled.

Author: Forklog
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