BlackRock took a giant leap toward a spot bitcoin ETF, filing a registration statement with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Thursday.
Known as the the iShares Bitcoin Trust, the Delaware statutory trust will hold assets primarily consisting of bitcoin held by a custodian designated as Coinbase Custody Trust Company.
The ETF will be benchmarked against the CME CF Bitcoin Reference Rate - New York Variant from FCA-authorized crypto index Administrator CF Benchmarks, a subsidiary of Kraken.
“An estimated 20% of Americans have now owned bitcoin at some point. BlackRock’s proposed ETF potentially offers the other 80% an option that is altogether more familiar and accessible,” CF Benchmarks CEO Sui Chung said in an emailed statement.
Latest attempt to register a spot bitcoin ETF with the SEC
BlackRock in 2022 launched a private trust to offer U.S.-based institutional clients exposure to spot bitcoin.
The latest filing will be widely watched, as the SEC as so far held off from approving a spot bitcoin ETF. The regulator has previously rejected a proposal from Grayscale to convert its flagship GBTC fund into a spot bitcoin ETF.
21Shares and Cathie Wood’s Ark Investment have been trying since 2021 to register a spot bitcoin ETF.
(Updates with comment from CF Benchmarks.)
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