Just as the stock market is impacted by events out of its control, investors buying into the cryptocurrency industry face the same uncertainties in what can be an even more volatile business environment. Digital currencies such as Bitcoin as the biggest player in the realm of cryptos have been under the gun since early January with a substantial loss in value from last December’s all-time highs. Recent trading showed signs that bitcoin’s slide had bottomed out with a slight increase in value in over the past few weeks. That bull run came to a sudden end with Wednesday’s action by the US Securities and Exchange Commission.
According to a post on www.cnbc.com by Arjun Kharpal , the price of bitcoin declined sharply with the SEC’s decision to postpone a decision on whether a bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) that was proposed by VanEck and SolidX would be approved. The report added that this is the third time that VanEck has proposed an EFT for bitcoin investors.
This delay had a negative impact on the entire digital currency industry with several cryptos losing value in Wednesday’s trading. The value of Bitcoin dropped six percent and it was trading around $6,300 late in the day according to data from CoinDesk as a principal source of market values for cryptos. This drop represents of loss of $9 billion in bitcoin value.
VanEck is an investment firm and it joined SolidX as a financial service company earlier this year with a proposal to open a EFT that would be backed by actual bitcoins as opposed to relying on speculation through futures. The CNBC post clarified an EFT as a ‘financial product that tracks the price of an asset and is listed on an exchange’. It also stipulates that investors are not actually buying the underlying asset.
When it comes to the highly speculative nature of cryptos, an EFT could be viewed as a safer way to invest in the industry than actually buying into bitcoin on a crypto-asset exchange.
The SEC has already turned down two previous attempts by VanEck to introduce an EFT for investing in bitcoin currency. Wednesday’s delay was followed by a statement by the SEC that it would make a decision on the matter at the end of September. This was obviously viewed in a negative light given the steep decline in bitcoin’s trading value.
Bitcoin quickly established itself as the market leader in cryptos as the world’s largest digital currency. It peaked in value last December with a value close to $20,000 as its all-time high. It dropped below the $6000 level in late spring before staging a brief rally above the $7000 level in recent trading.
While a few other cryptocurrencies had gained some traction this year, bitcoin’s share of the entire industry remains as high as it was when it was at its peak value in late 2017. This basically confirms the notion that as Bitcoin goes, so goes the entire crypto investment market.
Along with VanEck’s efforts to launch an EFT, there are other outfits with applications in the works such as one from Gemini crypto exchange founders Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss. However, the SEC has yet to approve any of these plans.
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