CBOE Revokes Bitcoin ETF Application

- January 23rd, 2019

CBOE Global Markets initially made the application for a bitcoin exchange-traded fund in June of last year.

CBOE Global Markets has officially withdrawn its bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) application, the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) revealed on Wednesday (January 23).

According to the notice from the SEC’s deputy secretary Eduardo Aleman, CBOE elected to withdraw its proposed rule change to list shares of the VanEck SolidX Bitcoin Trust on the CBOE BZX Exchange.

The bitcoin ETF application made by CBOE Global Markets was initially unveiled last June and had asked that it be able to list and trade shares of the VanEck SolidX Bitcoin Trust. It was noted that VanEck and SolidX had formed a partnership earlier that month for a physically-backed ETF filing.


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CBOE’s application withdraw on Wednesday is hardly surprising. Case in point, the SEC hasn’t shied away from handing out bitcoin ETF-related rejections over the course of the last year, including nine in August and, of course, the infamous Winklevoss brothers’ bitcoin ETF snub in July.

The SEC claimed its reasons for rejecting the nine ETFS are that they didn’t meet requirements that a “national securities exchange’s rules be designed to prevent fraudulent and manipulative acts and practices.”

Meanwhile, the agency similarly argued in its rejection to the Winklevoss twins last summer that bitcoin markets and the Gemini Exchange are not “uniquely resistant to manipulation.”

However, the brothers claimed in a Reddit Ask Me Anything session in early January that they are “committed as ever to making an ETF a reality.”

CBOE’s application withdrawal comes during the middle of the US federal government shutdown, which has been in effect since December 27.

According to the SEC’s website, the agency has, until further notice, a “limited number of staff members available.”

“The SEC has staff available to respond to emergency situations involving market integrity and investor protection, including law enforcement,” the agency says.

CNBC reported on Wednesday that VanEck will open up bitcoin ETF discussions “when the SEC gets going again.”

The bitcoin price, meanwhile, has dipped 0.60 percent over a 24-hour period to US$3,584.83 as of 6:59 p.m. EST on Wednesday. Year-to-date, the top digital currency is down 4.6 percent.

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Securities Disclosure: I, Jocelyn Aspa, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article. 

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