ETF providers hope to have cracked regulators’ code for creating the first exchange-traded product backed by Bitcoin — but it’s going to cost you.
Van Eck Associates Corp. and SolidX Partners Inc. filed a request to list a Bitcoin-linked ETP to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Wednesday.
The fund will be physically-backed, which means it will hold actual Bitcoin, and will be insured against loss or theft of the cryptocurrency, according to the firms.
The SEC asked companies to pull about a dozen applications for cryptocurrency-linked products in January, and last year rejected the Winklevoss Bitcoin Trust ETF. SolidX and VanEck were among the companies who had filed to list funds.
They hope to have addressed regulators’ concerns with changes they made in the new, joint request by increasing the share price and basing prices off regulated trading firms, according to SolidX Chief Executive Officer Daniel H. Gallancy.
“Based on various comments, it seems that regulators are concerned right now about having an ETF that is available to retail investors,” Gallancy said in a telephone interview. “We think that will change over time, but right now a good place to start is with a product geared purely toward institutional investors.”
Hopes for a Bitcoin ETF were running high last year after the CME Group Inc. and Cboe Global Markets Inc. listed Bitcoin futures, as investors speculated the SEC might approve funds linked to financial instruments trading on major exchanges.