WisdomTree: the next candidate for a Bitcoin ETF

It’s already happened in Canada, now US investors finally want a Bitcoin ETF too. It’s certainly not for lack of applications, as the latest example WisdomTree shows.

The Bitcoin ETF chapter is entering the next round in the USA. As has now become known, the New York-based asset manager WisdomTree has applied for an exchange-traded Bitcoin fund at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The application reached the US Securities and Exchange Commission on 11 March. If granted, the WisdomTree Bitcoin Trust would be launched on the Chicago Board Options Exchange’s BZX platform under the ticker BTCW. The contracts would be Bitcoin News Trader settled according to CF Benchmarks‘ „CF Bitcoin US Settlement Price“, a price index that tracks the price on major BTC spot exchanges.

This is by no means the first time that WisdomTree has ventured into the crypto market. It already has an ETH fund that is one of the leading institutional investments of its kind. A little more than a year ago, WisdomTree also decided on a strategic partnership with the blockchain start-up Securrency. Since the goal of the investment at the time was to develop regulation-compliant blockchain solutions for the exchange-traded fund, the current application to the SEC seems only logical.

WisdomTree has been present with crypto products for some time now

However, WisdomTree already applied for an ETF in June 2020 with the aim of investing up to five per cent of its capital in BTC futures contracts. In doing so, this fund, named „WisdomTree Enhanced Commodity Strategy“, is mainly focused on energy, agriculture and metals. In December 2019, the company launched a physically-backed, exchange-traded Bitcoin product listed on the SIX Swiss Exchange.

WisdomTree’s application joins a phalanx of companies seeking SEC approval for a bitcoin ETF. Just last month, NYDIG, a financial services company specialising in cryptocurrencies, applied for a Bitcoin ETF. After all, the leading US investment bank Morgan Stanley could be won as a partner for this project. But so far, the SEC has put all applicants in their place. Can a change of course be expected with Gary Gensler, the new man at the helm of the SEC? In neighbouring Canada, they have already come this far. The hopes of the crypto community for a licence rest on SEC Commissioner Hester Peirce. That is why she has been given the nickname „Crypto Mom“. In her opinion, approval should only be a matter of time, because otherwise investors would have to resort to „less optimal“ solutions.