Spot Bitcoin ETF Hopefuls Submit Amended S-1s, Awaiting SEC Green Light

In the dynamic world of cryptocurrencies, the anticipation for a spot Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) in the United States has reached a fever pitch. As the clock ticks closer to the expected approval date, a cascade of major contenders has rushed to submit their final Form S-1 amendments to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on Monday, Jan. 8.

Leading the charge was asset manager Valkyrie, swiftly followed by an impressive lineup including WisdomTree, BlackRock, VanEck, Invesco, Galaxy, Grayscale, ARK Invest, 21Shares, Fidelity, Bitwise, and Franklin Templeton. Each company’s filing carries significant weight, potentially setting the stage for a groundbreaking week for Bitcoin.

The filings represent a pivotal moment, paving the way for what could be the first spot Bitcoin ETFs approved in the United States. These final S-1 amendments are crucial repositories of information, detailing fees and disclosing the identities of market makers associated with the prospective ETFs.

One notable trend amidst this rush for approval is the aggressive adjustment of fees by some applicants. ARK and 21Shares, for instance, have announced plans to waive their 0.25% fee for a substantial six-month period on the first $1 billion in assets under management (AUM). BlackRock’s proposed Bitcoin ETF, on the other hand, will initially charge 0.2% for the first 12 months or up to $5 billion in AUM, later increasing to 0.30%.

Eric Balchunas, an ETF analyst at Bloomberg, weighed in on the ongoing fee war among potential Bitcoin ETFs, suggesting that while these fee adjustments are significant, they might not dramatically alter the competitive landscape at this juncture.

ARK and 21Shares have outlined their strategic moves in the S-1 statements, intending to secure approximately $437,000 for initial seed creation baskets by Jan. 8. This capital will be utilized to acquire Bitcoin before or at the time of the shares’ listing on the CBOE BZX Exchange.

The fervor and strategic maneuvers from these major players underscore the growing interest in bringing Bitcoin to mainstream investment platforms. If approved, these ETFs have the potential to open new avenues for investors to engage with cryptocurrencies, signaling a pivotal moment in the evolution of digital assets within traditional financial frameworks.

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