SEC Seeks Public Feedback on BlackRock’s Options Trading

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has initiated a public comment period regarding Nasdaq’s proposal to permit options trading on BlackRock’s iShares Bitcoin Trust, a spot bitcoin ETF.

SEC Solicits Public Opinion on Proposal

The SEC’s move to open a 21-day comment period reflects its willingness to consider expanding the scope of cryptocurrency-related financial products in the market. According to the filing, the proposed amendment to Options 4, Section 3, Criteria for Underlying Securities, would enable Nasdaq to list and trade options on the iShares Bitcoin Trust. This Trust is considered a Unit appropriate for options trading on the Exchange.

The swift action from the SEC on this matter is noteworthy. Bloomberg Intelligence ETF research analyst James Seyffart highlighted the unusual speed of the SEC’s response to the proposal. Seyffart indicated that if the SEC maintains this pace, options trading on the spot Bitcoin ETFs could receive approval by the end of February.

BlackRock’s iShares Bitcoin Trust Gains Traction

Concurrently, BlackRock’s iShares Bitcoin Trust (IBIT) reached a milestone of $1 billion in assets under management within just a week of its launch on January 12. Comprising 99% bitcoin and a small fraction in fiat currency, the fund’s rapid growth underscores the escalating investor interest in cryptocurrency as a legitimate asset class. 

Robert Mitchnick, Head of Digital Assets at BlackRock, expressed enthusiasm about the Trust’s early success and reaffirmed the company’s long-term commitment to providing accessible, high-quality ETFs.

Ethereum ETFs on the Horizon

The cryptocurrency ETF landscape is broadening, with firms like BlackRock and Fidelity seeking approval for Ethereum ETFs. The SEC has postponed its decision on Fidelity’s Ethereum ETF proposal until March 5. This follows a November application by Fidelity for the Fidelity Ethereum Fund, spurred by a court ruling questioning the SEC’s rationale for rejecting spot crypto ETFs while allowing futures-based products.

Introducing options trading for BlackRock’s Bitcoin ETF could signify a new era in cryptocurrency investments, offering more diversified and sophisticated trading instruments. This move aligns with the increasing integration of digital assets into mainstream financial systems and could attract a broader range of investors to the crypto market.

Read Also: USI Tech CEO Charged for $150M Crypto Fraud Scheme

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