Bitcoin ETF: SEC decision could already be made on Friday

According to a source close to the SEC, the long-awaited decision on the fate of the Winkelvoss Bitcoin ETF will probably be taken on Friday.

The US Securities and Exchange Commission has until March 11 to decide on the proposed regulatory change – a positive decision would pave the way for the Bitcoin ETF and would be the first change of its kind.

The decision, regardless of the outcome, is the result of a three-year battle between the Winkelvoss twins Cameron and Tyler.

They first submitted their proposal for a Bitcoin loophole to the SEC in mid-2013

Should the SEC decide in favour of the ETF, analysts expect a sharp rise in the share price: According to them, a possible approval has already been priced in and has driven the price up in recent weeks. Bitcoin loophole reached several new record highs within a few days.

At 1,300 US dollars, however, the price upswing ended for the first time and Bitcoin encountered hard resistance from the bears. According to the price index, the digital currency reached its highest price at 1,293.47 US dollars on 3 March. Since then, the price has lost some of its momentum. Current price: 1,179 US dollars or 1,116 euros.

On the other hand, some analysts spoke out against approving the Bitcoin ETF. They say that if the ETF is officially traded on the Bats Global Exchange, it could have a negative effect on the Bitcoin price.

Phil Bak, former New York Stock Exchange Chairman and currently CEO of ETF and ACSI funds, said in an interview with CoinDesk that the SEC usually tries to avoid a public refusal. In the event of a rejection, Bak said, the SEC would probably pass on the final decision to another authority and postpone the final result.

According to Bak, such setbacks could be driven by other factors shortly before the deadline, especially in the case of Bitcoin:

“In this case, the government authority might want to show that it is not quite sure about Bitcoin. Alternatively, the proponents could also vote for the fund to the bitter end and have the decision clarified in court – rejection or not.”

“A coin toss
In the absence of a final decision there is great uncertainty in the market.

Arthur Hayes, co-founder of the BitMEX trading platform said:

“I have heard good arguments for and against ETF approval. Currently it resembles a coin toss: 50/50.”

Charles Hayter, co-founder and CEO of CryptoCompare, expressed similar views. He says that the quotas for or against a permit are more or less “out of the air”.

But not only experts directly rooted in the industry compare the SEC’s decision with a coin toss. Bloomberg analyst Eric Balchunas also predicted a 50/50 chance.

The waiting game
All those waiting for a decision from the SEC can only watch as the deadline of March 11th approaches.

Jeff Bishop, ETF expert and co-founder of the investor board, could imagine the SEC postponing the decision beyond March 11, probably accompanied by further price gains.

“I have the feeling they will find a way to delay the decision further. With the recent record highs and the expected ETF wave, they may try to delay things until the market has calmed down a bit.” Bishop himself has said.

Bishop himself has spoken out in favour of ETF approval:

“Investors should be allowed to decide on the true value of a Bitcoin. The more liquidity options available to the market, the more transparent and accurate the Bitcoin price will be,” says Bishop.