Ether ETFs fail to spark interest in disappointing debut week

Six eagerly-awaited exchange-traded funds (ETFs) that offer exposure to ether futures contracts got off to a less than spectacular start when they managed to attract a little under $10 million during their first week of trading.

Around the same time, Ethereum products in general saw outflows totaling $7.5 million.

According to Reuters, the figures, collated by CoinShares, offered fresh evidence of a “malaise” affecting crypto “at a time when investors are running from risk amid economic gloom and war in Ukraine and the Middle East.”

This viewpoint appears to be backed up by the fact that ether prices have dipped more than 5% this month, and the crypto market as a whole has shed somewhere in the region of $30 billion.

Conversely, earlier this month, Treasury yields hit their highest level for years, hinting at a pattern of investors abandoning higher-risk assets.

“The timing of the futures ETFs could hardly be worse,” said Vetle Lunde, senior analyst at K33 Research (via Reuters).

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While the six aforementioned ether ETFs didn’t even manage to hit $2 million on their first day, back in October 2021, the first fund tracking Bitcoin futures —  the ProShares Bitcoin Strategy ETF — raked in $570 million.

Speaking to Reuters, chief investment officer at IDX Digital Assets Ben McMillan, said his firm was “positioning investments more defensively until there was more clarity around Federal Reserve policy and the likelihood of a recession.”

“Investors are battening down the hatches and looking at how to make their portfolios more defensive. Speculative assets — even with a compelling growth thesis — are just a much lower priority now,” he added.

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