ProShares is the first company with the green light from the SEC to launch a bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF).
The ETF will trade under the BITO label and expand the options for accessing bitcoin through a brokerage account. Without the need for a crypto wallet or any direct interaction with the crypto market, the BITO ETF can be bought and sold like a stock.
ProShares announced the ETF’s launch on the New York Stock Exchange for Tuesday, October 19, 2021. After years of deliberation, the SEC green light marks a milestone and validation for the crypto industry.
According to Michael L. Sapir, CEO of ProShares, said the bitcoin-linked ETF already had investors lined up. “BITO will open up bitcoin exposure to a broad segment of investors who have a brokerage account and are comfortable buying stocks and ETFs, but do not wish to go through the hassle and learning curve of establishing another account with a cryptocurrency provider and creating a Bitcoin wallet or are concerned that these providers are unregulated and subject to security risks. ”
Additionally, BITO, also known as the ProShares Bitcoin Strategy ETF, will primarily invest in Bitcoin futures. At the end of July of this year, ProShares affiliate ProFunds launched the very first bitcoin-linked mutual fund in the United States. Like the ETF, the mutual fund offers more traditional investors the opportunity to tap into crypto with little effort.
A victory for crypto
Recently, the crypto industry has faced increased skepticism and crackdowns from officials as they reflect on regulation. The SEC has taken legal action against several large crypto-centric companies such as Ripple and BitConnect. In addition, requests for SEC approval of crypto-related ETFs have piled up.
Although ProShares withdrew its deposited ethereum-linked ETF in August, its recent deposit is a success for the crypto space.
Sapir says the development marks this year as a financial legacy moment. “We remember 1993 for the first equity ETF, 2002 for the first bond ETF and 2004 for the first gold ETF. 2021 will be remembered for the first ETF linked to a cryptocurrency, ”he said.
Additionally, the BTC-ETF news comes as bitcoin nears its highest price point and surpasses $ 57,000.
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