In a recent development, BlackRock has delayed its re-bid for a spot Bitcoin ETF. The delay has sparked speculation among industry experts, prompting a closer examination of the potential reasons behind this unexpected move.
Senior ETF analyst for Bloomberg Eric Balchunas put forward three theories for BlackRock's hesitation. First, he suggested that the firm might have already refiled, but a delay in updating the Nasdaq website could be responsible for the lack of public acknowledgment.
The second theory, which Balchunas found most intriguing, revolves around the inclusion of more surveillance-sharing agreement (SSA) details. While other firms merely replaced "Crypto Exchange" with "Coinbase" in their refilings, the Wall Street Journal's report hinted at the SEC staff's desire for "clarity and comprehensiveness." This implies that the regulator seeks additional information, a possible reason for BlackRock's delay as they aim to provide the necessary transparency.
agree, this is most likely reason IMO— Eric Balchunas (@EricBalchunas) July 3, 2023
Finally, the third theory revolves around the extraordinary performance of ARK Invest, which filed for a Bitcoin ETF in April and has since surged ahead. Despite this, Balchunas deemed it unlikely that BlackRock lost interest due to ARK Invest's success, as they likely anticipated the competition.
Regardless of the reason behind the delay, the SEC's recent communication with exchanges about unclear and insufficiently exhaustive bids for spot Bitcoin ETFs has led to a shakeout in the crypto market. Several other companies, such as Fidelity, Invesco, VanEck and WisdomTree, have refiled their proposals, listing Coinbase as their exchange SSA partner.