Bitcoin might not need an ETF afterall. In the past month we have seen multiple service offerings that have the potential to act in place of an ETF. Whether this be an ETN or the Bakkt platform, there are more options by the week.
Euros, Krona, …USD?
First reported by Bloomberg, the Swedish exchange ‘NASDAQ Stockholm’, has made a Bitcoin ETN (Exchange Traded Note) available to US investors. The ETN is known as Bitcoin Tracker One, and is offered by mother company CoinShares. This is the first time that a solution such as this has been made available to US investors. Although structured in a different manner, it will essentially give institutional investors a similar level of exposure to Bitcoin as they would with an ETF.
In the interview with Bloomberg, Coinshares CEO Ryan Radloff stated, “Everyone that’s investing in dollars can now get exposure to these products, whereas before, they were only available in euros or Swedish krona,” said Ryan Radloff, the chief executive officer of CoinShares Holdings Ltd., the parent of the company that offers the ETN. “Given the current climate on the regulatory front in the U.S., this is a big win for Bitcoin.”
As reported, the Bakkt platform could potentially turn out to be the biggest news of the year for Bitcoin. One of these reasons is much the same that today’s ETN announcement is piquing interest. The way the platform is structured will allow for institutional investors to gain exposure to the digital assets, thereby making an ETF essentially irrelevant.
From their initial descriptions, the platform will make BTC purchases available directly by brokerage accounts. This will allow for mutual funds to do the same, and add BTC to the list of equities they offer exposure to.
It would appear that current market conditions are greatly dependent on the outcome of multiple pending ETF decisions. It remains to be seen if this new development will result in a price rally similar to that of the one leading up to the SEC’s postponement of the CBOE ETF application.
Despite the overall market desire for an ETF, there have been multiple industry pundits speaking out about the subject. One such example is the well-respected Andreas Antonopoulos. In a recent video release on his YouTube channel, he raises some very interesting points. Simply put, he is against ETFs. They very well may have the ability to increase the value of Bitcoin by a large degree in the short term. In doing so, Bitcoin is now open to greater levels of manipulations. Even more importantly, Bitcoin strays a little bit further from the ideologies that it were founded upon in the first place. Consensus will become more skewed, governance will be hurt, etcetera.
If one thing is clear, everyone firmly believes that a Bitcoin ETF is an eventuality. With these recent developments, and an interest take on the market effect of an ETF by Andreas, maybe it is better than an ETF is not rushed along. In the meantime, those that have been unable to accrue their desired amounts of Bitcoin can do so, before the price skyrockets and makes attainability more difficult.