The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has delayed reviewing Bitcoin ETF applications from major financial firms, including BlackRock, Valkyrie, Invesco, and Bitwise.
Analysts say this postponement is tied to the impending risk of a U.S. government shutdown on Oct.1.
SEC Delays Bitcoin ETF Applications
According to separate Sept. 28 filings, the SEC has again delayed reviewing Bitcoin ETF applications submitted by prominent financial institutions like BlackRock, Valkyrie, Invesco, and Bitwise.
Bloomberg ETF analyst James Seyffart suggests these delays might be connected to the upcoming risk of a U.S. government shutdown on Oct. 1. This shutdown could potentially disrupt the operations of federal agencies, such as financial regulators like the SEC.
The competition to launch a spot Bitcoin ETF in the United States has attracted much attention from industry insiders. The first successful applicant stands to gain a significant advantage as a pioneer in this highly profitable market. Currently, there are ten firms with pending applications at the SEC, all competing for the chance to launch Bitcoin ETFs
This is not the first time the agency has postponed decisions on Bitcoin ETF applications. In August, the regulatory body had already delayed rulings on BlackRock, Invesco, Bitwise, and Valkyrie proposals. The SEC has previously denied multiple ETF applications, citing concerns about potential scams and market manipulation as reasons why such products should not trade in the U.S.
Analyst Increases Odds of Bitcoin ETF Approval
Recent legal developments have sparked speculation about the potential approval of a Bitcoin ETF. A federal court victory by Grayscale Investments has further fueled this speculation, leading market analysts to believe the SEC may be more open to approving such ETFs soon.
While these recent delays have set back the decision timeline, the SEC will have to make a final determination by mid-March for the third set of deadlines for the seven firms involved.
In late August, Bloomberg ETF analyst Eric Balchunas increased the likelihood of a spot Bitcoin ETF approval by the end of 2023 to 75%. This change is due to the U.S. Court of Appeals Circuit’s decision favoring Grayscale, which has significantly impacted the probability.
He has increased those odds to 95% by the end of 2024, reflecting growing optimism in the cryptocurrency industry about the eventual approval of Bitcoin ETFs in the United States.