SEC punts on Bitwise and Grayscale bitcoin ETF proposals

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has punted on two more spot bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) proposals.

Two extension orders hit the docket Friday for NYSE Arca's proposed rule changes — one for the Bitwise Bitcoin ETP Trust proposal and another for the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust proposal.

The SEC will now take an additional 45 days to review both proposals, kicking their decision deadlines to February 1, 2022, and February 6, 2022, respectively. 

"The Commission finds that it is appropriate to designate a longer period within which to take action on the proposed rule change so that it has sufficient time to consider the proposed rule change and any comments received," read both orders. 

The SEC has already denied VanEck and WisdomTree's offerings this year, prompting Grayscale to send a letter to the commission claiming the agency was applying uneven standards to spot bitcoin proposals. That letter alleged that if the SEC failed to approve Grayscale's offering, it could be in violation of the Administrative Procedure Act. 

The SEC has historically punted on bitcoin ETF decisions, capitalizing on the full amount of time for a decision in its procedures. Should the SEC decide to take the full amount of time, it could kick Bitwise and Grayscale's decisions all the way to June and July of next year.

The next product that it will be required to make a decision on is Kryptoin, with a deadline of Dec. 24.

About Author

Aislinn Keely joined The Block in the summer of 2019. She is a member of the outlet's policy team, holding down the legal beat. Before The Block, she lent her voice to the NPR affiliate WFUV, where she reported and anchored newscasts in addition to some podcast work. Aislinn is a proud Fordham Ram and editor-in-chief emerita of its newspaper. When she isn't writing or reporting, Aislinn is running and rock climbing.