The VanEck SolidX Bitcoin ETF Application Withdrawal Can Be Good for the Industry as a Whole


The last year has been unkind to Bitcoin, following the bull run that took it over towards the end of the year in 2017. This bull run ultimately brought it to a high point of $20,000, before sending it tumbling down to $3,000. Most of the analysts in the industry believe that the lack of regulations and the lack of action from institutional investors.

Many hopefuls believed that a bull run would be revived this year as Bitcoin would go through a correction, considering the many planned launched for products from major financial companies. Fidelity and Goldman Sachs are two of the players involved in these launches, bringing forth bitcoin custodian and trading services and bitcoin futures trading, respectively.

The most thrilling concept for bulls has been the idea of introducing exchange-traded funds. Many analysts saw this as an opportunity to bring billions of dollars into the industry, and even traders believed that the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) would surely approve one by February 28th, 2019. With this promising potential for approval, the Bitcoin price started to rise. However, on Wednesday, VanEck withdrew the application.

Based on information from VanEck, the decision to withdraw the filing seemed to have a lot to do with the partial government shutdown. The SEC had elected to push back the decision on the application twice last year and had rejected to requests of nine other ETF applications, expressing their worry about manipulation in the market. The decision came down to either accepting a denial with the continued shutdown or withdraw for now.

Jan van Eck, who is the chief executive of VanEck, spoke to CNBC on the matter, saying,

“the SEC is affected by the shutdown… we were engaged in discussions with the SEC about the bitcoin-related issues, custody, market manipulation, prices, and that had to stop. And so, instead of trying to slip through or something, we just had the application pulled and we will re-file and re-engage in the discussions when the SEC gets going again.”

A securities law expert within the government, Jake Chervinsky, believes that the shutdown is not the only reason for the withdrawal, commenting on Twitter that they probably believed a denial was imminent. A denial would be back press for VanEck, which is something Chervinsky does not believe that they would risk after all this time.

The SEC has given more clarity during this time about what it would take for approval, saying that the applicant will have to guarantee that there is no risk of price manipulation in the retail market. At eToro, senior market analyst Mati Greenspan commented,

“This proposal had a very slim change of success. SEC Chairman Jay Clayton has been stressing that the bitcoin market is not yet mature enough for an ETF.”

It seems that VanEck made the right decision in the delay, considering that the support from retail investors has not fluctuated. Bitcoin has kept up a price between $3,500 and $3,600, showing that there is still hope from the public that a Bitcoin ETF will be approved, even if not in the first quarter.

When the application returns, VanEck will have more preparation, though the market does not appear to be dependent on the authorities to keep its balanced price. In an email, Greenspan added,

“The market’s lackadaisical response to this news is a clear sign that investors are starting to understand: the crypto market is not dependent on any government or financial institution and no single product or service has the power to make or break bitcoin.”

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