Gensler: SEC’s Ethereum ETF Approval Process on Track

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The SEC Chair Gary Gensler announced that the approval process for Spot Ethereum ETFs is progressing smoothly, with anticipated launch dates in July following a structured regulatory approach and recent legislative clarity.

SEC Chair Talks ETH ETF Approval

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is progressing smoothly with the approval process for the Spot Ethereum ETF, according to SEC Chair Gary Gensler. This development comes after the SEC announced the approval of eight spot Ether ETFs in late May. Speaking at the Bloomberg Invest Summit, Gensler stated that although the approval process is advancing well, the exact timing for the product launch remains uncertain.

Progress and Expectations

Gensler’s recent comments align with those he made earlier this month during a Senate Appropriations Subcommittee hearing on Financial Services. He confirmed that individual issuers are diligently working through the registration process, which involves filing S-1 forms. These filings must be approved before the ETFs can begin trading. Gensler indicated that the process should be completed over the summer, emphasizing that disclosure and registration are the final steps.

Approval Background

The SEC approved the eight spot Ether ETFs on May 23, citing consistency with the Exchange Act and relevant regulations. This decision followed the approval of the first Bitcoin ETFs in January, where the SEC greenlit 19b-4 applications from several asset managers, including Fidelity, BlackRock, Bitwise, Grayscale, Franklin Templeton, VanEck, Ark, and Invesco Galaxy.

The approval process for Ether ETFs involves a meticulous two-step approach. First, the SEC must approve the 19b-4 filings, followed by a review and approval of the individual S-1 registration applications for each of the eight funds.

Regulatory and Legal Considerations

There is ongoing debate about whether the SEC’s decision was politically or legally motivated. Some analysts suggest that legal considerations played a more significant role, aiming to prevent potential legal conflicts. The passing of the Financial Innovation and Technology for the 21st Century Act (FIT21) by the US House of Representatives on May 22, which seeks to provide regulatory clarity for cryptocurrencies, may have influenced the SEC’s decision.

Additionally, the approval of spot Ether ETFs could be seen as a move to align with similar regulatory frameworks already in place for Bitcoin ETFs and Ether futures products on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange.

Market Implications

The Ethereum ETFs aim to replicate the success seen by Bitcoin ETFs, which reached an all-time high price of $73,000 just three months after their launch. While the exact launch date for these ETFs remains unknown, the current trajectory suggests a possible rollout by mid-summer, pending the completion of the necessary registration steps. This development would be a significant step towards integrating crypto-based financial products into mainstream markets.

Disclaimer: This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice. 

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