VanEck CEO Casts Doubt on Approval of Spot ETH ETF


In an interview with CNBC on April 9, Jan van Eck, the CEO of investment firm VanEck, expressed skepticism regarding the approval of a spot Ether (ETH) exchange-traded fund (ETF) by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in May. The chief executive suggested that his firm’s spot Ethereum ETF application is likely to face rejection.

The CEO of the asset management firm noted that VanEck, alongside Cathie Wood’s ARK Invest, was among the first to file for a spot Ether ETF in the United States. 

“We were the first to file as well for ethereum in the U.S., and we and [Ark Invest CEO] Cathy Wood, are kind of the first in line for May, I guess, to probably be rejected,” VanEck CEO Jan van Eck told CNBC’s Arjun Kharpal.

Rejection of VanEck Spot ETH ETF Application?

However, despite the initial filings, the chief executive expressed doubts about the approval process, citing the regulatory feedback received and the prolonged period of inaction from the SEC. 

The final decision on VanEck’s application is scheduled for May 23, along with several other pending applications from major players like Grayscale, BlackRock, and Fidelity.

CoinShares Exec Shares the Same Sentiment

CoinShares CEO Jean-Marie Mognetti shared van Eck’s pessimism, casting doubt on the likelihood of any Ether ETF approval in the near future, suggesting it might not occur “this side of the year.”

The skepticism regarding Ether ETF approvals stems from the SEC’s lack of communication and feedback on the pending applications. 

Lack of Communication from the SEC

Senior Bloomberg ETF analyst Eric Balchunas highlighted the “radio silence” between the regulator and prospective fund issuers as a significant obstacle to approval. Balchunas revised down the odds of an Ether ETF approval by May from 70% to 35%, reflecting the prevailing uncertainty surrounding the process.

Fellow ETF analyst James Seyffart echoed similar sentiments, emphasizing the absence of any comments or interactions from the SEC as a negative indicator. Seyffart expressed concerns over the regulator’s prolonged inactivity despite the impending ETF approvals.

VanEck Spot BTC ETF Soars

Despite the uncertainty surrounding Ether ETF approvals, VanEck’s spot Bitcoin ETF, trading under the ticker HODL, has experienced significant inflows since its launch in mid-January, indicating growing investor interest in Bitcoin. 

van Eck described Bitcoin as a “maturing asset” and highlighted the potential for more investors to gain exposure to the asset in the future.

In summary, VanEck CEO Jan van Eck’s comments underscore the uncertainty surrounding the approval of a spot Ether ETF by the SEC, reflecting the challenges posed by regulatory feedback and prolonged inaction from the regulator.

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