Ethereum ETF Update: Speaking At Bloomberg Invest, CFTC Chair Gary Gensler Says Application Is ‘going Smoothly’ | Old North State Wealth News
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Ethereum ETF update: Speaking at Bloomberg Invest, CFTC chair Gary Gensler says application is ‘going smoothly’

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Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Gary Gensler belied impatience upon fielding questions from reporters about crypto, including his agency’s handling of applications to launch Ethereum ETFs. In speaking with journalist Annmarie Hordern at the Bloomberg Invest event in New York on Tuesday, Gensler accused his interviewer of going after “clicks” after she asked him several questions related to crypto policy.

The issue of cryptocurrency ETFs has been a contentious one during Gensler’s SEC tenure, most notably when a federal appeals court last year rejected the agency’s decision to refuse applications for a Bitcoin ETF. The court ruling led the SEC to approve those Bitcoin applications in January and, despite initial signals from Gensler that the Ethereum petitions would be rebuffed, the agency more recently indicated it would grant them.

The agency’s apparent change of heart has led to ongoing speculation about how long the process will take. Despite his grumblings, Gensler—a noted crypto opponent—offered a few details.

“I don’t know the timing, but it’s going smoothly.” He elaborated that his team is waiting for asset managers to make “proper disclosures.”

Gensler’s comments came after SEC filings from this spring suggested that the agency may have adopted the position that Ethereum was a security for more than a year.

Gensler also made a point to clarify that an ETF trading Ethereum futures has already been approved. Last October, the SEC approved futures ETF applications for Valkyrie Investments, VanEck Funds, Proshares, Bitwise Asset Management, and five others. The pending spot ETF applications would give investors direct exposure to the asset via regulated exchanges.

Once heralded as a supporter of crypto by many who saw his tenure teaching a course on the subject at MIT as an endorsement, Gensler has come down hard on the industry over the past few years. Last year alone, the regulator brought 46 enforcements against crypto-related firms, according to a Bloomberg report.

Gensler juxtaposed the 11 bitcoin ETFs the SEC approved this year, which are currently trading on regulated markets, with what he called the “non-compliant model,” or exchanges that also knowingly trade non-compliant securities. “It’s about real protections for investors and for other people that want to access the capital markets,” said Gensler. It’s about trust in those markets.”

Gensler declined to answers a question about reports that his stance on crypto might cost Joe Biden, who appointed him, the election. “My number one priority is the American public,” said Gensler. “That’s the client, and so that’s who we represent.”

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