A Bitcoin ETF approval will happen next year, roughly half of The Block's 2021 Outlook Survey respondents say

Respondents to The Block Research's 2021 Digital Asset Outlook survey appear bullish on the prospects of a bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) approval next year.

Per the results, 37.8% of participants agreed — and 13.5% strongly agree — that the Securities and Exchange Commission will give the thumbs-up to a bitcoin ETF in 2021. Conversely, 21.6% disagreed with the notion and the remaining 27% were neutral on the topic. 

When a similar question was asked in The Block's 2020 Outlook survey, the majority of respondents — some 77.4% — disagreed with the idea that a bitcoin ETF would be approved during this calendar year.

To date, the SEC has shot down various proposals for bitcoin ETFs, citing the perceived risk of market manipulation and a dearth of surveillance agreements among marketplaces.

One agency commissioner, Hester Peirce, has consistently voiced disapproval to such rejections. The most reject rejection took place in February, when the SEC shot down the United States Bitcoin and Treasury Investment Trust from the New York-based firm Wilshire Phoenix.

"This order is the latest in a long string of disapproval orders that the Commission has issued regarding bitcoin-related products. This line of disapprovals leads me to conclude that this Commission is unwilling to approve the listing of any product that would provide access to the market for bitcoin and that no filing will meet the ever-shifting standards that this Commission insists on applying to bitcoin-related products—and only to bitcoin-related products," Peirce wrote at the time.

The bitcoin ETF question and other survey items can be found in The Block Research's 2021 Digital Asset Outlook Report.