Bitcoin topped $ 60,000 for the first time in six months on Friday and was nearing its all-time high as hopes grew that U.S. regulators would allow a futures-based exchange-traded fund (ETF), a move that is likely would pave the way for wider investments in digital assets.
Cryptocurrency investors have been waiting for the approval of the first U.S. ETF for Bitcoin, with bets on such a move fueling the recent rally.
The world’s largest cryptocurrency rose to $ 61,869.05 at 10:30 AM Riyadh, its highest level since mid-April. It has risen by more than half since September 20, and is approaching its record high of $ 64,895 in April.
The US Securities and Exchange Commission is expected to open the first US Bitcoin futures ETF next week, Bloomberg News reported on Thursday. According to traders and analysts, such a move would open up a new avenue for investors to get exposure to emerging markets.
“Crypto ETFs are inevitable. A product like this will eventually come to fruition as there is demand, ”said Chris Kline, chief operating officer and co-founder of Bitcoin IRA.
“It seems clear that regulators will soon, most likely by Monday, approve a version of a crypto ETF,” added Kline. “As regulators become more familiar with the space, the SEC is beginning to understand how these assets are stored, secured, and reconciled so that it makes sense in traditional finance.”
Bitcoin’s moves on Friday were fueled by a Twitter post from the SEC’s Investor Education Bureau asking investors to weigh the risks and benefits of investing in funds with Bitcoin futures contracts, said Ben Caselin of the Asia-based AAX crypto exchange.
Several fund managers, including the VanEck Bitcoin Trust, ProShares, Invesco, Valkyrie and Galaxy Digital Funds, have requested the introduction of Bitcoin ETFs in the US.
The Nasdaq approved the listing of the Valkyrie Bitcoin Strategy ETF on Friday.
After months of back and forth between the SEC and potential Bitcoin futures ETF issuers, the regulator appears poised to give the green light to a handful of filings that will open the door to wider access to cryptocurrencies for retail and institutional investors.
Under the rules used by ETF issuers, the SEC is not required to give express approval to ETFs, which can be launched after a 75-day period if the US regulator has no objection.
The 75-day deadline for the ProShares Bitcoin Strategy ETF ends on Monday, and the ETF can be launched on Tuesday.
The SEC declined to comment.
Crypto ETFs were launched in Canada and Europe this year and are growing in popularity given the growing interest in digital assets.
Derivatives exchange operator Cboe Global Markets Inc filed with the SEC for a rule change that would allow it to list certain complex ETFs. The SEC approved this application on October 1.
SEC chairman Gary Gensler previously said that the crypto market is rich in tokens, which may be unregistered securities, and prices are prone to tampering and millions of investors are vulnerable to risk.
Citing people familiar with the matter, the Bloomberg report states that ProShares and Invesco proposals based on futures contracts were made under the mutual fund rules that Gensler said ” offer considerable investor protection ”.
“It’s one of the last frontiers to access mandates,” said Joseph Edwards, head of research at crypto broker Enigma Securities. “Many Americans, in particular, have conditions on how they use much of their wealth. This allows Bitcoin to participate in the fortunes that keep US stocks as consistently strong as they are.”