Bitwise Files Amended Spot Ethereum ETF S-1 Form

Asset management firm Bitwise has amended its S-1 registration with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to list and trade shares of a spot Ether exchange-traded fund (ETF).

This follows SEC Chair Gary Gensler’s statement that the commission might finalize approvals for spot Ether ETFs by summer 2024, with some analysts anticipating it could happen as early as July.

Bitwise Amends its S-1 Registration

Bitwise filed an updated Form S-1 registration statement with the SEC on July 3. It includes a six-month fee waiver for up to $500 million.

While the filing did not specify an exact launch date for listing and trading on NYSE Arca, it mentioned that this would occur “as soon as practicable after the effective date” of the registration.

Bloomberg ETF analyst Eric Balchunas noted that Bitwise filed the amended S-1 ahead of a July 8 deadline, “Prob just wanted to get it off their plate and from what I hear the last round of comments were ‘literally nothing’ = took zero time to update. Also, no fee yet. Prob get those next week-ish.”

He also speculated on the reasons for the SEC’s delayed approval process, suggesting it could be due to a problematic issuer or simply the summertime slowdown.

“No one really knows why the SEC is taking their sweet time with these, given how light comments were, these could have easily been trading by now,” added Balchunas.

Summer Approval Timeline

The move by Bitwise follows the SEC’s approval of the spot Ether ETF 19b-4 filings from eight asset managers on May 23. Since then, the crypto investment community has eagerly awaited further developments from the SEC regarding the potential release date.

In a June 13 Senate Banking Committee hearing, SEC Chair Gary Gensler stated that the commission expected to approve S-1 registration statements for asset managers “sometime over the course of this summer.” Gensler mentioned that the registration process for the Ethereum exchange-traded products was proceeding smoothly, with approvals for individual issuers expected in the coming months.

This came after Gensler, in a June 5 interview on CNBC, hinted at a potential delay in the SEC’s approval of spot Ether ETFs, stating that the next steps would “take some time.”

Bitwise initially filed its S-1 with the SEC for shares of a spot Ether ETF in March amid rumors that the regulator was considering labeling ETH a security. However, court filings from June suggested that the SEC had dropped this consideration.

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