SEC Rejects Ark 21Shares Spot Bitcoin ETF for Second Time

The U.S. markets regular has rejected a score of ETF applications for products that invest directly in bitcoin while approving a number of funds tracking the BTC futures market.

AccessTimeIconJan 26, 2023 at 5:11 p.m. UTC
Updated Jan 26, 2023 at 9:23 p.m. UTC

For the second time, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) rejected a joint effort by Ark Investment Management and 21Shares to list a spot bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF).

The SEC said the Cboe BZX Exchange – on which the ETF would be listed – had failed to "demonstrate that its proposal is consistent with the requirements" surrounding prevention of fraud and other malevolent practices.

An earlier attempt by Cathie Wood's Ark Investment Management and Swiss investment products provider 21Shares to list a spot bitcoin ETF in the U.S. was rejected in April. The two firms decided to have another go, filing a new application in May.

The U.S. markets regular has rejected a score of applications for an ETF investing directly in bitcoin, but has approved a number of funds tracking the BTC futures market.

One of the firms to have its bid rejected, Grayscale Investments (owned by CoinDesk parent Digital Currency Group) has chosen to take legal action over the SEC's decision, with oral arguments set to commence on March 7.


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Jamie Crawley

Jamie Crawley is a CoinDesk news reporter based in London.