Nov 10, 2023

BlackRock wants to create an ETF that holds Ethereum's ether (ETH), a plan that deepens the world's largest asset manager's commitment to cryptocurrencies.

Video transcript

Now, the world's largest asset manager seems to be diving deeper into the crypto space. A new filing reveals that Blackrock wants to create an E AN ETF that holds Ether joining us now to discuss this Coin desk, global policy and regulation managing editor Nick Day, who's also the editor of Coin desk's state of crypto newsletter. Good morning to you, Nick. Good morning. Happy Friday. Happy Friday. All right, we're talking about this Black Rock News. So earlier Thursday, Blackrock registered is shares Ethereum Trust in the State of Delaware. Uh Back up for us, explain why this is significant and why we're seeing this market reaction. Yeah. So, you know, um first off Blackrock, obviously, uh we've been saying this for months but speculation is that it's applying for a Bitcoin ETF because it feels that the, you know, current situation around Bitcoin, the, you know, the market, everything is right for an approval for such product. Uh You know, I think we're seeing a similar assessment around this E three TF application that we saw yesterday where Blackrock is not necessarily gonna file for one of these. If it thinks it's a pools errand, it's gonna file if it's confident that, you know, the market is in a place where such product will be approved uh coming on top of the fact that, you know, it's been a, uh there's been a lot of, you know, I think, heightened uh excitement over the possibilities of Bitcoin ETF being approved and it really does seem like, you know, Blackrock if anything uh is um you know, just really kind of adding to this excitement. So, yeah, I imagine markets uh reacting at least in part to just this idea. Ok. Well, you know, the world's biggest asset manager, which is a company that has, you know, serious ties to regulators because it has to do so much business with regulators, uh you know, whatever feedback you're getting seems to suggest that, ok, this is something that is worth pursuing. I I it might be worth pursuing but are, are, are they just taking a again? I mean, this is kind of like a gamble if you will, right? Because of course, we don't know for certain that it will be approved. Um And first of all that, the ones that are up, the nine or so that are up for uh approval are Bitcoin. So even even if those get approved and uh Ether Spot ETF might take some time. Correct? Yeah, yeah, this is uh you know what we saw yesterday was, I think 19 4, which is just the first form. It hasn't even been sent to the SEC itself yet. So, uh this is just Blackrock kind of announcing its intention to send this filing to the SEC. So any process is gonna take a while, certainly, we're not gonna see this in the next few months. But, you know, at the same time, if you look at the filing itself, Blackrock seems to have designed it in such a way to just try and, you know, get a lot of arguments for it and out front, you know, immediately. So it addresses surveillance sharing agreements that has as an agreement with coin base. Uh There's a part of it that seems to kind of harken back to the SEC uh you know, legal fight against Grayscale where uh Grayscale appealed the rejection of its own. ETF and the appeals court said, uh it agreed with Grays skill's position that the SEC acted, you know, arbitrarily and graciously in denying that. So there is an entire part of the new ETF application for Ether that says like, ok, well, these Ether futures ETS are out there and just the exact same market operating under the exact same, you know, whatever. And so if an Ether futures ETF is allowed a spot, Ether ETF should also be allowed. So, you know, clearly they're paying attention to what's going on in this uh you know, broader, you know, ETF battle. And they're saying, ok, well, you know, these are the arguments we seem to deny previous ETF applications and we disagree with uh whatever, like we think that the market is right. All right, Nick. And we, we know that Blackrock Ceo Larry Fink has maybe changed his tune when it comes to crypto within the past year. Have you been following what Larry Fink has been saying about crypto ahead of these two? Well, the one application we know for sure. And the, the spot Ether ETF, well, you know, before he found a way to make money off of it, he seemed pretty skeptical now, uh I forget what exactly the words was. I'm not sure if he was the one who use like change catalyst or whatever the phrase was. But uh yeah, absolutely. He does seem to have changes to, I'm sure it's just a coincidence though, you know, clear, definitely nothing to do with the fact that now they're trying to, you know, file for ETS on top of these crypto products that, you know, will obviously bring his company, uh you know, more money. But you know, that, that's just the case. We're just here to point out the coincidences. All right, Nick, we are going to leave it there. Have a great weekend and we'll see you next week e that Coin Desk Global Policy and regulation managing editor Nick Day and don't forget to sign up for the state of crypto newsletter on coindesk dot com.

Learn more about Consensus 2024, CoinDesk’s longest-running and most influential event that brings together all sides of crypto, blockchain and Web3. Head to to register and buy your pass now.