Bitwise Asset Management, a provider of cryptoasset index and beta funds, announced on Thursday it has filed an initial registration statement on Form S-1 with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) relating to a new proposed physically held bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF).
According to Bitwise, the proposed Bitwise Bitcoin ETF would track the Bitwise Bitcoin Total Return Index, seeking to capture the full value of an investment in bitcoin, inclusive of meaningful hard forks. The index is produced by Bitwise Index Services, LLC. It was also revealed:
“The proposed ETF differs from previously filed proposed bitcoin ETFs in that it will rely on regulated third party custodians to hold its physical bitcoin, and in that the index draws prices from a large number of cryptocurrency exchanges, representing the majority of currently verifiable bitcoin trading.”
While sharing more details about the filing, John Hyland, Global Head of Exchange-Traded Funds for Bitwise, stated:
“While there can be no assurance that the 19b-4 application will be granted or the SEC will review and ultimately accelerate the registration statement, we are optimistic that 2019 should be the year that a bitcoin ETF launches.”
Matt Hougan, Global Head of Research, who oversees Bitwise’s indexing efforts, then added:
“The SEC has asked thoughtful and relevant questions about the quality of the crypto trading ecosystem, the reliability of crypto pricing, the strength of the arbitrage function in crypto and the robustness of crypto custody. We have spent the past year researching these questions and look forward to discussing those findings with the SEC staff in connection with the filing and listing application.”