Bitcoin prices experienced a surge of approximately 4.5% in Asian morning hours on Monday amidst optimistic speculation that a Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) could potentially be approved in the following months. This surge is seen as a continuation of the market’s reaction to the decision made by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) not to appeal the ruling in the Grayscale case. The SEC’s choice not to challenge the rejection of a spot BTC ETF approval demonstrates an evolving dynamic in cryptocurrency regulations. While this decision does not guarantee that Grayscale will convert its Bitcoin trust into an ETF, it allows Grayscale’s application to progress and potentially paves the way for future spot Bitcoin ETFs in the U.S., narrowing the gap with Europe and Canada where ETFs have already gained traction among investors.
The Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC) saw its shares traded at a significant discount of 15.87% to the trust’s net asset value on Friday. This level was last observed in December 2021, and it indicates an increasingly narrow discount since reaching a record low of almost 50% during the bear market in December last year. The narrowing discount coincided with the SEC decision, further emphasizing the positive sentiment among investors.
Moving to Australia, the country’s Treasury announced on Monday that it anticipates releasing draft legislation covering licensing and custody rules for crypto asset providers by 2024. Once the legislation becomes law, exchanges will have a 12-month transition period to comply with the new regime. This timeline suggests that Australian digital asset platforms may only receive a license under the new regulations by 2025. Nevertheless, this represents a significant step by the Australian government towards establishing a comprehensive crypto regulation policy.
In terms of market analysis, a chart depicting Bitcoin’s price, open interest in perpetual futures, and the ratio of perpetual futures open interest to market cap since early 2022 reveals a recent increase in leverage used in the market. This rise in leverage suggests traders positioning themselves in anticipation of a potential appeal by the SEC on the Grayscale ruling. However, the deadline for such an appeal expired on Friday without any action from the SEC.
In other news, California’s “BitLicense” bill has been signed by Governor Newsom, bringing regulatory clarity to the state’s crypto industry. Furthermore, Ferrari recently announced plans to start accepting crypto payments in the U.S., as reported by Reuters. These developments highlight the growing acceptance and integration of cryptocurrencies in various sectors.
Overall, the recent events surrounding the Grayscale ruling and the potential approval of a Bitcoin ETF, alongside regulatory progress in Australia and the broader adoption of cryptocurrencies by major entities, indicate the continued evolution and maturation of the crypto market.