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ARK 21Shares Deadline for Spot Bitcoin ETF Extended by SEC

ARK 21Shares Product Review Extended by SEC for 60 Days

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has granted itself an additional 60-day period to evaluate ARK 21Shares‘ investment product for listing on the Cboe BZX Exchange, setting a final cutoff date of January 10th.

ARK 21Shares ETF with SEC logo

Despite bipartisan calls from lawmakers urging SEC Chair Gary Gensler for swift approval of a spot Bitcoin exchange-traded fund, the SEC has chosen a more cautious approach, establishing a new deadline of January 10, 2024, for their ultimate decision.

We just did an article on the lawmakers pushing for swift approval from the SEC here. 

In a notice issued on September 26, the SEC announced its intention to extend the timeframe for evaluating a proposed rule change that would permit the listing of ARK 21Shares’ spot Bitcoin ETF on the Cboe BZX Exchange. A prior extension granted on August 11 had given the regulatory body until November 11 to determine whether to approve, disapprove, or defer a decision once more.

“The Commission finds that it is appropriate to designate a longer period within which to issue an order approving or disapproving the proposed rule change so that it has sufficient time to consider the proposed rule change […] and the issues raised therein,” stated the SEC.

Recently, the SEC extended decision deadlines for various Bitcoin Trust applications, including those submitted by BlackRock and Fidelity, pushing them to October 17. The deadline for the Valkyrie Bitcoin Fund was also moved to October 19.

The SEC’s cautious stance is grounded in concerns about potential fraud and market manipulation. While the SEC did approve the first bitcoin futures ETF in 2021, it has yet to give the green light to a spot bitcoin ETF.

Notably, ARK CEO Cathie Wood had foreseen this delay, suggesting that if the SEC approves one Bitcoin ETF, it may do so for multiple funds simultaneously. This perspective hints at a coordinated strategy by the SEC for the introduction of cryptocurrency-based financial products.

Numerous professionals in the industry had anticipated that the commission might revisit pending ETF applications after the SEC’s legal defeat to Grayscale in August.

Tick tock, Gary!


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