Early in August 2023, Bloomberg ETF experts James Seyffart and Eric Balchunas calculated a 65% likelihood that a spot bitcoin ETF would be approved. However, as August draws to a close and in light of a US court ruling in favor of Grayscale in a legal battle with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the pair have changed their prognosis, now putting the possibility at 75%.

SEC Decision Looms for Seven Spot Bitcoin ETFs

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is about to approve or reject seven different proposals for a spot bitcoin ETF, barring any delays. Famous companies, including Blackrock, Wisdomtree, Valkyrie, Fidelity, Vaneck, Bitwise, and Invesco, are the sources of these applications. Balchunas, a senior ETF analyst at Bloomberg, explained that he and Seyffart had changed their original estimate of the probability.

Balchunas wrote on the social networking site X (formerly Twitter): “James Seyffart [and] I are boosting our odds to 75% of spot bitcoin ETFs launching this year (95% by the end of ’24). Although we had already built Grayscale’s victory into our previous 65% chances, the ruling’s unanimousness and decisiveness exceeded our expectations and, according to Elliott Z. Stein, provided the SEC with “very little wiggle room. Added the ETF analyst:

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In addition to the legal loss, there is also the PR loss (which is significant because it shapes narratives and alters perceptions). And this was extensively covered by mainstream media, including the NYT, WSJ, CNN, AP, ABC, and many more. Denial will likely become politically unviable because of the legal and PR setback, in our opinion.

The advice from the ETF specialists comes after a D.C. court sided with Grayscale, the biggest cryptocurrency asset manager, in its legal struggle with the SEC over its reluctance to convert GBTC to a spot bitcoin ETF. Balchunas noted that in light of the current decision, he and Seyffart wouldn’t be surprised if the SEC chose to postpone the decision. However, he thinks the precise time may not be as important; it’s more likely that one morning we’ll learn the SEC has caved and a launch is imminent.


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