The Chicago Board Options Exchange’s (CBOE), along with investment firm VanEck and financial services company SolidX, has re-applied with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for a rule change to list a Bitcoin (BTC) exchange-traded fund (ETF). VanEck digital asset strategy director Gabor Gurbacs announced the public filing on Jan. 31.
ETFs are securities that track a basket of assets proportionately represented in the fund’s shares. They are seen by some as a potential step forward for the mass adoption of cryptocurrencies as a regulated and passive investment instrument.
CBOE had initially withdrawn its request for a rule change to list a Bitcoin ETF on Jan. 23. A CBOE spokesperson the told Cointelegraph that the decision to withdraw its request was the result of the U.S. government shutdown as the end of the review period on Feb. 27 approached. Some legal experts noted at the time that the SEC was operating on a limited basis due the shutdown, which was the result of a political impasse over a proposed wall on the U.S.–Mexico border.
The application process has experienced several delays, as the SEC pushed back its decision on multiple occasions. The firms first filed with the SEC to list a Bitcoin-based ETF on June 6, 2018. Subsequently in August, the commission delayed its decision on listing the ETF until Sept. 30. The commission then requested further comments regarding the decision, claiming that the agency has not “reached any conclusions with respect to any of the issues” on the rule change.
In December, the decision was delayed again, and as the proposed rule change was first published in the Federal Register on July 2, 2018, the maximum period of consideration fell 240 days later, on Feb. 27, 2019.