VanEck's bitcoin futures ETF to list tomorrow

VanEck's bitcoin futures-based exchange traded fund (ETF) is slated to list tomorrow, according to an announcement from the firm. 

The VanEck Bitcoin Strategy ETF will launch under the ticker XBTF on Cboe exchange. VanEck's product is touted as the lowest-cost bitcoin-linked ETF, since its net expense ratio is lower than competitors. It's also been structured as a C-Corp, which the firm says may provide a "more efficient tax experience" for those holding long term.

XBTF will primarily invest in CME bitcoin futures. The listing of a futures ETF comes just after the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) denied the firm's proposal for a physically-backed bitcoin ETF. The SEC extended its decision deadline as far as possible, soliciting industry feedback and continually punting the date, before finally denying VanEck's rule change proposal last week.

It was the first in a long line of spot ETF proposals to receive a decision, leaving many observers less optimistic for approval. Indeed, SEC chair Gary Gensler has previously said he's more interested in reviewing applications for products holding CME bitcoin futures, particularly those that seek to register under the higher investor protection standards of the Investment Companies Act of 1940 as opposed to the disclosure-focused 1933 Act, which most spot offerings — including VanEck's — proposed to be regulated under.

Despite focusing for now on its futures product launch, VanEck's director of Digital Assets Product, Kyle DaCruz, said the spot ETF remains the ultimate hope.

“While a ‘physically backed’ bitcoin ETF remains a key goal, we are very pleased to be providing investors with this important tool as they build their digital asset portfolios,” said DeCruz.