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Key Reasons Behind Surging Bitcoin ETF Approval Odds

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Wed, 2/08/2023 - 16:10
Key Reasons Behind Surging Bitcoin ETF Approval Odds
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ETF analysts James Seyffart and Eric Balchunas have announced an increase in the odds of approval of an Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) to 65% — a significant leap from the 50% estimation just a couple of weeks prior, and a near-impossible 1% a few months back.

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The primary contributing factors for this revised estimate, according to the analysts, include the seemingly relaxed stance of Gary Gensler, chairman of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), and the strategic moves by major cryptocurrency investment firm Grayscale.

Grayscale Investments has emerged as a key player in the unfolding drama surrounding Bitcoin ETFs. The firm responsible for the popular Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC), it recently submitted a letter to the SEC. This letter emphasized Grayscale's demand for equitable treatment in the race for approval and hinted at concerns about the agency's potential bias toward other firms in the approval process.

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Another factor influencing the rising approval odds is the pressure that may be exerted on Gensler by BlackRock, which has also filed for a Bitcoin ETF, and potentially by Democratic politicians.

Furthermore, Gensler's recent comments during an interview with Bloomberg, downplaying his role at the SEC and leaving room for dialogue and decision-making among SEC staff, signal a shift away from unilateral decisions.

The last piece of the puzzle is the SEC's apparent endorsement of Bitcoin via Coinbase, one of the leading cryptocurrency exchanges. The SEC had reportedly asked Coinbase to limit its trading to Bitcoin alone, hinting at the growing regulatory acceptance of the leading cryptocurrency. This move, seen by some as a soft endorsement of Bitcoin, points to a future where a Bitcoin ETF is more than just a possibility.

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