First Mover Americas: BlackRock Files for a Spot Bitcoin ETF

The latest price moves in crypto markets in context for June 16, 2023.

AccessTimeIconJun 16, 2023 at 12:23 p.m. UTC
Updated Jun 16, 2023 at 4:23 p.m. UTC

This article originally appeared in First Mover, CoinDesk’s daily newsletter putting the latest moves in crypto markets in context. Subscribe to get it in your inbox every day.

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The iShares unit of fund management giant BlackRock (BLK) filed paperwork Thursday afternoon with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for the formation of a spot bitcoin (BTC) ETF. To be named the iShares Bitcoin Trust, the fund's assets will "consist primarily of bitcoin held by a custodian on behalf of the Trust," according to the filing, which said that the custodian will be crypto exchange Coinbase (COIN). Though approving a number of futures-based bitcoin ETFs, the SEC has notably rejected other fund management company attempts at opening a spot bitcoin ETF, including those from Grayscale, VanEck, and WisdomTree.

Altcoins suffered losses over the last week, with the tokens called out as securities in the SEC’s lawsuits against Binance and Coinbase witnessing some of the worst drops. Among them is Polygon’s MATIC which is down 19% for the week even after posting a gain early Friday. Avalanche’s AVAX lost 17% and Solana (SOL) 15%. Ether, unmentioned in the suits, held up slightly better, losing 9%. Bitcoin declined 3% for the week, though it’s higher by 2% over the past 24 hours to the current $25,500.

Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, is leaving the Netherlands, after failing to persuade the Dutch regulator to issue a virtual asset service provider (VASP) license, which attests that it meets anti-money laundering (AML) guidelines. As of July 17, Dutch residents will only be able to withdraw their funds from the platform, according to a statement from the exchange. “We regret to announce that Binance is leaving the Dutch market,” Binance said on its website. “This unfortunately means that no new users residing in the Netherlands will be accepted as of today … No further purchases, trades or deposits will be possible. We encourage those users to take appropriate action by withdrawing assets from their accounts.”

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Edited by Stephen Alpher.


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Lyllah Ledesma

Lyllah Ledesma is a CoinDesk Markets reporter currently based in Europe. She holds bitcoin, ether and small amounts of other crypto assets.