Cathie Wood’s ARK joined the Bitcoin ETF race — but does it matter?

ARK Invest's joint Bitcoin ETF needs approval of the SEC, but nobody on Earth has been successful despite years of trying.

Bitcoin bull Cathie Wood’s firm ARK Invest is now pushing for an Exchange Traded Fund (ETF) for BTC — formally graduating from backing crypto stocks like Coinbase and Grayscale Bitcoin Trust.

According to a regulatory filing dated June 28, ARK has partnered with Zurich-based Exchange Traded Product (ETP) provider 21Shares to try listing the product — dubbed ARK 21Shares Bitcoin ETF.

Wood joined the board of 21Shares’ parent (formerly Amun Holdings, now 21Shares, too) in May.

The $2 billion company — in which Wood personally invested — manages ETPs trading across Europe.

  • ARK’s ETF ticker would be “ARKB.”
  • It would list on the Cboe Global Market’s BZX Exchange.
  • S&P Bitcoin Index would set its benchmark price.

Of course, ARK’s Bitcoin ETF needs approval of the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). But nobody on Earth has been successful despite years of trying.

Bloomberg noted 14 issuers currently have pending Bitcoin or Bitcoin futures ETF applications, including Wall Street’s VanEck, WisdomTree, and Fidelity

The SEC has so far rejected two while six have withdrawn their bids.

‘Crypto mom’ unsure why US has no Bitcoin ETF

ARK’s move came about a week after the SEC postponed its decision on VanEck’s proposal, lodged in March.

At the time, the markets watchdog showed skepticism, particularly over price manipulation in the crypto ecosystem.

Bitcoin ETFs — if approved — would offer investors exposure to BTC to without actually holding it.

The SEC worried it wasn’t possible to buy and sell “large amounts of Bitcoin without significant market impact” (our emphasis).

Days later, the regulator delayed ruling on Valkyrie Digital Assets‘s ETF request.

And while the US regulator drags its feet, Canada has three Bitcoin ETFs trading on stock exchanges, as well as one fund tracking Ethereum.

CI Galaxy’s Ethereum ETF is the only one still positive since listing (just).

[Read more: SEC chief says crypto exchanges need a regulator for market manipulation]

SEC Commissioner Hester Peirce (otherwise known as “crypto mom”) more-or-less noted the SEC is stuck in its ways, and not prepared to evaluate “a new phenomenon” like Bitcoin.

“I thought that if we had applied our standards as we have applied them to other products, we would already have approved one or more of them,” said Peirce in an interview with CNBC last week.

“With each passing day, the rationale that we have used in the past for not approving seems to grow weaker.”

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