SEC Likely to Delay ETF Applications Beyond January 2024

By Ben Knight December 06, 2023 In ETF, SEC
Source: Adobe Stock
  • The SEC has delayed its decision on whether to approve a spot Ether ETF until January 25, 2024.
  • The delay is due to the SEC needing more time to consider the proposed rule change.
  • The news comes as the market readies up for a spot Bitcoin ETF approval in the coming months.

The crypto market, and particularly Bitcoin, has experienced a superb final quarter of 2023, with most tokens posting solid gains. The bullish economic conditions are riding on the coattails of a potential spot Bitcoin ETF approval, something the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has been deliberating on for months now. Such approval would likely result in an influx of money from traditional finance pouring into the crypto market, representing perhaps the closest intersection between the two markets yet. However, there are still a few roadblocks before the news on the tip of everyone’s tongue becomes a reality.

Spot ETF Approval May Be Pushed Beyond January

The SEC has been extremely cautious with how it introduces a spot Bitcoin ETF into the market, with the regulatory body already delaying approval of various applications multiple times this year. Despite this, multiple analysts predicted there was close to a 90% chance that approval would come by January 2024. While, for now, Bitcoin ETFs may still be on track for the next-month target, it appears the SEC may not be willing to approve Ethereum ETFs at the same time.

Updated Ethereum ETF list, December 6, source: Bloomberg Intelligence/

Grayscale, a long-time proponent of the crypto market and providing TradFi alternatives to investors, was one of the first to file for a spot Ether ETF. A response was required by the SEC as of today, the 6th of December – however, the SEC has once again pushed back making a firm decision.

According to a new notice from the SEC, the body desires more time to “sufficiently consider the proposed rule change and the issues raised therein”.


The document goes on to say:

Accordingly, the Commission…designates January 25, 2024, as the date by which the Commission shall either approve or disapprove, or institute proceedings to determine whether to disapprove the proposed rule change.

United States Securities and Exchange Commission

Although the statement has no direct implication on spot Bitcoin ETF approval, it has already caused a stir among the crypto community. However, Bloomberg analyst James Seyffart claims that the delay is “completely normal” and expects an Ether ETF to receive approval by May-June next year.

Ben Knight

Ben Knight

Ben Knight is a writer and editor from Melbourne with a passion for all things music and finance. He enjoys turning complex topics – especially the technical details of cryptocurrency – into digestible bites that anybody can understand. He acquired his Master’s in Writing, Editing and Publishing from RMIT in 2019 and has run his own creative writing business ever since.

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