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US SEC official believes crypto-ETF bound to happen eventually

A US SEC commissioner believes that a cryptocurrency-based exchange-traded fund (ETF) will eventually be approved in the United States.

The Securities and Exchange Commission has so far been reluctant to approve the necessary rule change that would allow crypto ETFs to be traded on US securities markets. Over the past couple of years, the regulator has rejected a number of Bitcoin ETF proposals on the basis that they do not ensure protection against fraud and price manipulation. However, in a recent interview with news outlet Roll Call, SEC commissioner Robert J. Jackson Jr. said that he believed that someone would eventually satisfy the commission’s requirements.

“Eventually, do I think someone will satisfy the standards that we’ve laid out there? I hope so, yes, and I think so,” Jackson said, as quoted by Roll Call.

Jackson also said that a number of applications for a crypt-based ETF awaited the SEC’s decision, although he would not speculate on whether any of those would get approved.

Perhaps one of the most prominent applicant is Cboe Global Markets, which last year submitted proposal to list ETF shares from fund manager VanEck and blockchain firm SolidX. Cboe withdrew its original proposal in January, in a move to avoid a possible automatic rejection amid the government shutdown in Washington. A week later, the firms reapplied for SEC approval.

One of SEC’ high-profile rejections last year was that of Bats BZX Exchange’s proposal to list and trade shares of the Winklevoss Bitcoin Trust. Jackson argued that that was “not a difficult case”, adding that “the risk for manipulation and for people getting hurt was enormous”. The trust has since taken measures to address the regulator’s concerns.

Jackson noted that SEC’s rejections have encouraged applicants to seek ways to improve their proposals.

“I’m happy to say market participants have begun to come in with ideas,” he said. “Whether or not we’re going to find one that really protects investors I don’t know, but I do know that that case wasn’t especially close.”

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