It’s official: Bitwise has requested the SEC to withdraw its bitcoin ETF proposal.
Bitwise’s head of global research, Matt Hougan, said:
“We did indeed withdraw the application. This is a procedural step, and we intend to refile our application at an appropriate time”.
In fact, Hougan himself revealed that they are working to address the doubts raised by the SEC and that they are not actually willing to abandon the path of developing such a financial product. To date, however, the timing of a possible re-proposal is not known.
In the note sent to the SEC, the company explains that this decision is consistent with the public interest and investor protection.
The company has been working on a bitcoin ETF since at least January of last year when it submitted an initial proposal to the SEC. Since then, as Hougan reveals, eight meetings have taken place between Bitwise and the SEC itself, producing over 500 pages of documentation, including a presentation on fake volumes on bitcoin trading markets.
Despite this, the SEC was not convinced, and so Bitwise, like VanEck/SolidX and Cboe, preferred to withdraw its request in order to have plenty of time to propose another one.
It seems that by now the main obstacle is precisely the doubts about the manipulation of BTC’s trading market, and therefore on the way its price is determined, to the point that the President of the SEC himself, Jay Clayton, has explicitly stated that he does not believe that an ETF on bitcoin can ever be approved until these specific doubts are resolved.
Moreover, considering that from this point of view there are no significant steps forward, the approval of bitcoin ETFs in the US seems to be at a stalemate from which there is no sign of exit for now.
Curiously, however, the other American public agency that oversees the financial markets, the CFTC, has never raised such doubts and has instead approved several bitcoin futures contracts.