More delays for Bitcoin futures ETF?

13 Oct 2021

Crypto asset investors may need to wait longer for a Bitcoin futures exchange-traded product.

This is according to Todd Rosenbluth, senior director of ETF and mutual fund research at research firm CFRA.

Rosenbluth told CNBC’s “ETF Edge” that although a Bitcoin futures product will likely be the first crypto ETF to gain approval, there may be additional delays due to the current regulatory situation.

As it stands, there are over 20 crypto asset-based ETFs awaiting approval from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Cointelegraph reports.

Rosenbluth indicated regulators could be waiting for all of these products to meet their objectives to gain approval simultaneously to mitigate a “first-mover advantage.”

He added: “It’s possible — in fact, we think it’s likely — that we’re going to see a delay of a Bitcoin futures ETF until 2022, until the regulatory environment is more clear.”

The SEC is predominantly concerned about possible discrepancies between Bitcoin and futures prices, funds becoming too large and the risk of cross-border investment, said Van Eck Associates CEO Jan van Eck.

“In Bitcoin rallies, Bitcoin futures strategies can underperform by even up to 20% a year,” van Eck said. “The SEC wants to have some visibility into the underlying Bitcoin markets.”

Any forecasts over further delays could impact the Bitcoin price as analysts indicated large investors could be buying up Bitcoin ahead of a possible imminent ETF approval. Bitcoin has risen 37.5% in two weeks to surpass the $58,000 mark on Tuesday.

Yet Bloomberg senior ETF analyst Eric Balchunas remains confident there is a 75% chance of ETF approval before the end of October.