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A company that provides crypto-currency and other exchange-traded funds (ETFs) has filed an application with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to list shares in a leveraged bitcoin futures ETF.
Volatility Shares Trust filed a Form 8-A with the SEC on June 23, suggesting the firm was preparing to launch an investment vehicle that the regulator might consider a class of securities under its purview. The registration statement listed Volatility Shares “2x Bitcoin Strategy ETF” under the ticker BITX, which offered leveraged Bitcoin (BTC) corresponding to a 2x daily performance increase in the S&P CME Bitcoin Futures Daily Roll Index.
The 2x bitcoin ETF $BITX has become effective, scheduled to launch Tuesday. I was doubtful it would happen but looks like it’s official. Could this be early sign of SEC lightening up? After $BITO launch I believe they made earlier 2x filers withdraw pic.twitter.com/XXxSt9xypu
— Eric Balchunas (@EricBalchunas) June 23, 2023
As of press time, the SEC has not expressly rejected Volatility Shares’ application for a cryptocurrency investment vehicle — the leveraged BTC futures ETF will be the first of its kind in the United States. The Volatility Shares Trust’s website says it plans to start trading on June 27, but adds that the registration statement is “not yet effective.”
A separate SEC filing on Form N-1A for the listing of shares in a Leveraged Bitcoin Futures ETF on the CBOE BZX exchange states that neither the SEC nor the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission “approved or disapproved these securities or conveyed the accuracy or adequacy of of this prospectus.” The SEC tends to reject many crypto-related ETF applications.
Related: BlackRock Files for Spot Bitcoin ETF — First in the US if Approved
Although the US financial regulator has not approved any spot cryptocurrency ETFs, it has begun to allow BTC futures-related ETFs starting in 2021, including those from Valkyrie and ProShares. In May and June, respectively, Valkyrie filed with the SEC to list its own leveraged bitcoin futures ETF, as well as a spot BTC ETF.
The filing comes amid SEC lawsuits against cryptocurrency exchanges Binance and Coinbase over alleged offerings of unregistered securities. Some US lawmakers have called for the removal of SEC Chairman Gary Gensler and his alleged “regulation through enforcement” approach to cryptocurrency firms and others.