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Spot Ethereum ETFs Poised for Launch as SEC Nears Final Approvals

The SEC and Bitwise are finalizing details on spot Ethereum ETFs, indicating a potential launch could be imminent despite remaining regulatory challenges.

The launch of several spot Ethereum ETFs is nearing fruition, with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and issuers like Bitwise ironing out the final regulatory kinks. Katherine Dowling, Bitwise’s Chief Compliance Officer, shared optimistic insights with Bloomberg on July 9, indicating that each S-1 amendment has shown fewer issues, suggesting a close to the long-awaited approval process.

Bitwise, which prides itself as a “crypto specialist”, is positioning to stand out among giants like BlackRock and Fidelity by leveraging its deep focus on the cryptocurrency sector. Unlike other applicants that rushed to meet a July 8 filing deadline, Bitwise had already submitted its most recent amendment on July 3, demonstrating its proactive stance in the evolving ETF landscape.

While the SEC’s approval timeline remains open-ended, SEC Chair Gary Gensler hinted that the approvals could come “over the summer,” though the term “summer” can be subjectively interpreted. “It’s been a little bit of a long, hot summer for the issuers waiting,” Dowling remarked, echoing the anticipation and anxiety among stakeholders.

Spot Ether ETFs could attract significant market attention and investment, with Bitwise’s Chief Investment Officer Matt Hougan speculating up to $15 billion in inflows within the first 18 months similar to the traction seen with spot Bitcoin ETFs.

Further discussions between Bitwise and the SEC have also touched on potential new products beyond Bitcoin and Ethereum, with Dowling noting a “quite welcoming” attitude from the regulator. However, she expressed concerns that some of these products might only advance under a new SEC chair, given the stringent approval processes and the historic pace of product rollouts.

Despite the focus on Ethereum, other applications for spot cryptocurrency ETFs like VanEck and 21Shares’ spot Solana (SOL) ETFs are also underway, showcasing the growing interest and diversification within the cryptocurrency ETF space.


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