Bitcoin soars to $30K on rumors of BlackRock ETF approval
Bitcoin’s price skyrocketed to almost $30,000 on Monday morning, fueled by a misleading rumor on the social media platform X, previously known as Twitter. The unfounded claim suggested that the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) had greenlit BlackRock’s application for a spot bitcoin ETF.
However, BlackRock quickly dispelled these speculations. Speaking to the media, a spokesperson from BlackRock clarified, “The iShares Spot Bitcoin ETF application is still under review by the SEC.”
It was Cointelegraph, a prominent crypto news website, that initially disseminated the false information on X.
To be sure, the SEC delayed its decisions on several bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) proposals in late September, leaving many in the crypto industry feeling pessimistic for any future blessing from the agency.
SEC filings indicated the securities regulator would give itself until January to make decisions on ETFs filed by Ark 21Shares and GlobalX. The latest round of delays includes bitcoin ETF applications from BlackRock, Valkyrie, and Bitwise.
The SEC initially delayed its decision on these funds on August 31. Additionally, Hashdex’s bitcoin ETF decision, which was expected around October 6, was also postponed.
The delays are seen as an effort to address potential disruptions caused by an expected government shutdown. SEC Chair Gary Gensler recently warned that a shutdown would leave the regulator with a “skeletal” staff.
BlackRock’s bitcoin ETF application is highly anticipated, given its status as a $9 trillion asset manager with a strong track record of SEC approvals. Analysts suggest that BlackRock’s approval rate with the SEC stands at roughly 575-1.
Despite the crypto winter, BlackRock has been increasing its exposure to digital assets space and blockchain technology. The asset manager made headlines in January after it added bitcoin as an eligible investment to its flagship Global Allocation Fund, which is one of the most preferred vehicles for ordinary and passive investors.
A company filing shows that the move enables BlackRock to allocate part of the fund’s $15 billion to cash-settled bitcoin futures traded on commodity exchanges registered with the CFTC. In December, the New York-based financial conglomerate announced the launch of its crypto ETF in Europe despite the regulatory concerns in the continent.
BlackRock also participated in a $400 million funding round for Boston-based fintech startup Circle. In addition to its investment and role as a primary asset manager of USDC cash reserves, BlackRock entered into a partnership with Circle to explore capital market applications for its stablecoin.
As of now, U.S. investors have access to bitcoin futures ETFs, which invest in bitcoin futures contracts rather than the digital currency itself. These ETFs involve agreements to buy or sell bitcoin at a predetermined price in the future.