SEC Remains Tight-Lipped on Spot Bitcoin ETF Approval Timeline

Vignesh Karunanidhi
SEC Remains Tight-Lipped on Spot Bitcoin ETF Approval Timeline
Source: Bloomberg

U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Chairman Gary Gensler declined to offer any concrete timeline or plans regarding spot bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) approvals during public comments on Wednesday. This comes on the heels of a court order requiring the agency to revisit its rejection of Grayscale’s ETF application.

When asked about the status of bitcoin spot ETF applications and prospects for approval, Chairman Gensler stated, “Those are things that are in front of staff.” He indicated he would “let that play out” rather than pre-judge the situation before recommendations from SEC staff come.

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SEC’s Gensler didn’t disclose any timeline

The Chairman similarly deferred when pressed for any details on timing or whether potential order applications may be considered.

Industry participants like Grayscale and Wall Street firms Fidelity and BlackRock are anxiously awaiting clarity on how the SEC will approach spot bitcoin ETFs in light of the recent court order. The order requires the SEC to re-evaluate Grayscale’s bitcoin ETF application after judges found the agency’s initial rejection was “arbitrary and capricious.”

Gensler also declined to comment on other pending court cases between the SEC and crypto companies, stating, “I’m going to let each of these crypto exchange cases speak for themselves.”

The Chairman reiterated concerns about compliance and non-compliance in the crypto space during his remarks at the Securities Enforcement Forum. However, he acknowledged that crypto still represents a small fraction of the broader US capital markets.

With little substantive detail provided, the cryptocurrency industry will continue to face an uncertain wait to see how the SEC proceeds on spot bitcoin ETF approvals. The agency’s next moves and timeline remain unclear.