June 23, 2024

The United States Securities and Exchange Commission has approved eight spot Ether exchange-traded funds (ETFs) in the country. In a landmark decision on Thursday evening, the financial watchdog approved 19b-4 forms for the ETFs from BlackRock, Fidelity, Grayscale, Bitwise, VanEck, Ark, Invesco Galaxy, and Franklin Templeton.

BlackRock, Bitwise, Grayscale, Van Eck, Ark 21Shares, Fidelity, Franklin, and Invesco had previously amended their 19b-4 filings with the SEC to eliminate provisions for staking, a crypto rewards system. By doing this, these financial companies hoped to obtain approval more easily. The 19b-4 filings are documents that national exchanges like the NASDAQ or the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) submit to the SEC to request approval for listing new products on their trading platforms.

The crypto industry has welcomed the SEC’s decision, hailing it as a groundbreaking development.

Sergey Nazarov, Co-Founder of Chainlink, a decentralized blockchain oracle network built on Ethereum, said in an email that the decision proves that the capital markets are now getting involved in the crypto industry.

“One of the most important aspects of this ETF approval is the spotlight it places on the potential of smart contracts and decentralized applications (dApps), which are critical use cases for Ethereum,” he said.

Similarly, Paul Marino, Chief Revenue Officer at GraniteShares, said in an email that the approval from the SEC is another validation that cryptocurrencies and blockchain are real, a big part of the future of investing, and here to stay.

“Those who make ‘pet rock’ statements regarding Bitcoin and others who continue to say ‘I just don’t get it’ when referring to crypto would benefit from doing some research to learn how the tokenization of assets will change what we know about investing today,” Marino said.

The latest move follows the SEC approval earlier this year of spot Bitcoin ETFs, which pushed Bitcoin to an all-time high. The approval of the spot Ether ETF application is a historic moment for the crypto industry, as financial giants have been waiting for it for years.

Crypto asset trading firm QCP Capital had predicted earlier in the day that there could be a potential 60% increase in the price of Ether. It suggested that Ether could surge to around $6,000 if the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) approves spot Ethereum ETFs.

Meanwhile, the crypto market didn’t jump immediately after the news. Bitcoin was down 2%, trading around $67,000, while Ether was up 1%, hovering around $3,800 on Thursday evening.

The SEC’s approval follows the United States House of Representatives voting in favor of the crypto bill called “The Financial Innovation and Technology for the 21st Century Act.” The bill would effectively classify cryptocurrency as a commodity, not a security, and therefore exempt it from securities regulations. It would also determine the oversight of cryptocurrencies and whether they should be regulated by the SEC or the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC). However, it still needs to be passed by the Senate and signed into law by the president.

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