The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has opted to delay its verdict on the approval of the Hashdex Nasdaq Ethereum ETF, which seeks to encompass both spot ether and futures contracts within its holdings. The decision-making process has been extended, with the SEC indicating the necessity for additional time to deliberate on the proposal. A final determination, whether to approve, disapprove, or initiate further proceedings, is now scheduled for January 1, 2024.
In a parallel move, the SEC has also postponed its decision on an application related to converting a Hashdex bitcoin futures ETF. This delay, outlined in a filing dated November 15, is attributed to the SEC’s intention to allocate a more extensive timeframe for comprehensive consideration of the proposal and its associated concerns.
Initially filed in September by the Nasdaq stock exchange, the proposed ETF is managed by Toroso Investments. This fund registered as a commodity pool operator with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission and a member of the National Futures Association, intends to adopt a diversified approach. Nasdaq, in its 19b-4 form, highlighted the ETF’s structure, emphasizing a blend of Spot Ether, Ether Futures Contracts, and cash holdings, diverging from a 100% reliance on Spot Ether to mitigate potential vulnerabilities to market price manipulation.
SEC’s Predilection for Ether Futures-like ETFs
The SEC’s historical approvals have centered predominantly on ether futures-like ETFs, steering away from approvals about spot ether ETFs or mixed variants. Last month witnessed the approval of nine futures-based products simultaneously, marking their debut in the market.
In a recent trend, various firms, including Grayscale and BlackRock, have actively advocated for spot ether ETFs. Grayscale’s attempt to convert its Ethereum trust to a spot ether ETF last month and BlackRock’s recent filing for a spot ether ETF underscore the industry’s growing interest in this domain.
The developments with ether ETFs are concurrent with the anticipation surrounding the SEC’s potential approval of a spot bitcoin ETF. Notable entities such as Fidelity, Grayscale, and BlackRock eagerly await the SEC’s decision on this matter, reflecting the industry’s keen interest in expanding ETF offerings.