In early 2024, the Securities and Exchange (SEC) approved the launch of over 10 spot Bitcoin exchange-traded funds (ETFs) in a landmark decision. In the months leading up to the announcement, the price of Bitcoin rose dramatically, going from less than $30,000 in late October to above $48,000 in early January. Additionally, the ETFs attracted tens of billions in investment.
Though this decision was limited to Bitcoin, the ruling opened the door for the possibility of other spot ETFs. Perhaps the most anticipated is Ethereum, the second-largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization.
In 2023, Ethereum had a strong year, appreciating nearly 100%. However, these gains are much smaller than Bitcoin, which appreciated over 150%. Some believe that the hype surrounding the Bitcoin ETFs, as well as other factors, propelled both Bitcoin and Ethereum higher and higher throughout 2023.
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However, the price of Bitcoin dropped off sharply after the approval of the ETFs. While it has begun to slowly recover, it is still far from the highs it saw on the first day the spot ETFs traded. While this fall in price could be for several reasons, most believe it to be a sell-the-news event, as the approvals were largely known and there was some profit taking on certain ETFs, such as Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC).
Ethereum ETFs could also be a possibility soon. According to Standard Chartered, the ETFs could be approved on May 23. This is the final deadline for the first wave of applications. This is notable as the Bitcoin ETFs were approved on the final deadline.
To support its case, Standard Chartered looked at the SEC’s stance on ETH. The SEC has not classified ETH as a security in other filings. Additionally, the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) has a listed and regulated ETH futures contract.
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While this seems to be positive for both the potential approval of an ETF and ETH in general, there is no guarantee that it will be approved.
Another interesting piece to consider is the…