CBOE Withdraws Rule Change for Bitcoin ETF, Will Continue to Discuss Matter With the SEC

After much hype surrounding its filing of a Bitcoin ETF — along with several others at the same time — the Chicago Board Option Exchange’s (CBOE) BZX Equity Exchange has withdrawn its request for a rule change by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

The SEC’s formal statement of the withdrawal of the CBOE’s request for a rule change said:

…the Commission designated a longer period within which to approve the proposed rule change, disapprove the proposed rule change, or institute proceedings to determine whether to disapprove the proposed rule change…the Commission instituted proceedings to determine whether to approve or disapprove the proposed rule change…on January 22, 2019, BZX withdrew the proposed rule change.

Had the rule change been approved, it would have allowed the CBOE to list the VanEck and SolidX-backed Bitcoin ETF.

Speaking to CoinDesk, VanEck director of digital asset strategy Gabor Gurbacs spoke of how they are working with regulators to bring other investment vehicles to the market:

We are actively working with regulators and major market participants to build appropriate market structure frameworks for a Bitcoin ETF and digital assets in general.

CEO of VanEck Jan van Eck, speaking to CNBC, said that the rule change proposal may yet again be submitted at a later date, following more discussion with regulators:

We were engaged in discussions with the SEC about the bitcoin-related issues, custody, market manipulation, prices, and that had to stop. And so, instead of trying to slip through or something, we just had the application pulled and we will re-file when the SEC gets going again.

Market Still Waiting on ETF Approval

The CBOE, sent in its application at a time when 9 Bitcoin ETFs were submitted by 3 different entities. The decision to withdraw the request is a direct result of the U.S. government’s shutdown as the review period comes to a close, a source told Cointelegraph. A new filing will be made later.

The SEC excited some investors after it decided to postpone its formal decision on ETFs. Rumors also floated that a Bitcoin ETF was imminent, though this never came to fruition, while one SEC commissioner also said that the approval of a Bitcoin ETF was “definitely possible.”

ETFs and other investment vehicles are seeing steady approval and consideration in some parts of the world, such as Switzerland and Japan. While there was speculation that Japan’s financial watchdog would approve a Bitcoin ETF, this turned out to not be the case.