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Bitcoin ETF Approval Expected in January, Ethereum’s Path More Complex

Bloomberg Intelligence analysts James Seyffart and Eric Balchunas recently discussed the potential approval of spot Bitcoin ETFs on The Scoop podcast, projecting a high likelihood of the SEC greenlighting a series of these ETFs between January 5-10.

Their prediction aligns with the final deadline for applications by major players like ARK and 21Shares, which were initially filed in April, positioning them ahead of others in the race, including BlackRock, in a competitive field of 12 firms.

Seyffart speculates that the SEC’s strategic delay in decisions aims to synchronize approvals simultaneously, preventing any single firm from gaining an unfair edge. He emphasizes that a denial at this stage would mark a significant shift in the SEC’s approach.

Drawing insights from the approval of ether futures ETFs earlier this year, Seyffart believes the SEC may lean towards mass approval of Bitcoin spot ETFs, maintaining neutrality in the cryptocurrency ETF arena.

However, the road for spot ether ETFs appears more intricate due to differences in market robustness and underlying technologies compared to Bitcoin. Seyffart anticipates approvals for ether spot ETFs likely toward the end of May 2024, albeit with less certainty compared to Bitcoin ETFs.

He underscores that the SEC’s 19b-4 process and clearance of S-1 prospectuses by the Corporate Finance division could introduce delays, making the precise timeline for ETFs’ market debut uncertain.

While Seyffart expects cautious initial reception due to stringent due diligence processes, he foresees BlackRock potentially expediting these ETFs’ inclusion on platforms, leveraging its industry relationships.

Despite initial caution, Seyffart expresses confidence in substantial capital inflows driven by hype and strategic interests of major asset owners, foreseeing long-term success for these ETFs.

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