Many analysts and investors are excited about the new futures-based Bitcoin ETF. However, as much a breakthrough as it is, it isn’t precisely the ETF the crypto community has been waiting for. Many crypto investors long for an instrument that allows them to track the BTC spot price directly.
Unfortunately, spot-based Bitcoin ETF products continue to face pushback from regulators globally. The SEC cites possible price manipulation, hacking issues, insufficient liquidity, and the lack of data transparency as reasons not to approve a proper Bitcoin ETF.
Top financial watchdogs like Gary Gensler favor approving an ETF that tracks Bitcoin futures rather than one based on spot Bitcoin prices. Authorities argue that ETFs tracking futures markets are a less risky way to gain exposure to crypto markets.
Crypto proponents remain optimistic that the SEC will eventually approve a spot-based ETF product that allows them to invest in Bitcoin. Meanwhile, Australia’s financial regulator — the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) — gave the green light for spot ETFs for Bitcoin and Ethereum. Although actual trading may still be a few months away, the approval would enable the country’s large pension system to access the crypto market.
In the long run, the first futures-linked Bitcoin ETF in the US and regulatory milestone for spot Bitcoin ETFs in Australia will open the door for more regulatory clarity, already fueling investors’ excitement and momentum for digital assets adoption.
For now, the futures Bitcoin ETF will serve as the best entryway for more investors to access cryptocurrencies through traditional capital markets. It has also drawn more retail investments into crypto markets, creating a new buzz that is likely to grow participation in spot markets across crypto exchanges.