ARK Aims for Bitcoin Futures ETF With 21Shares

It's ARK's second application for a Bitcoin-related ETF.

Photo: Brendan McDermid/Reuters

Key Takeaways

  • ARK Investment Management has filed an application for a Bitcoin futures ETF alongside Alpha Architect ETF Trust and 21Shares.
  • If approved, investment product will track the price of Bitcoin futures traded on the CBOE.
  • Back in June, ARK filed an application for a physically-backed Bitcoin ETF product with 21Shares.

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ARK Investment Management has joined forces with 21Shares in hopes of receiving approval for a Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) from the SEC.

New Application Filed For BTC Futures ETF

ARK Investment Management, a firm led by notable tech investor Cathie Wood, has partnered with Alpha Architect ETF Trust and 21Shares to file an application for a Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF).

ETFs are regulated investment products that track the value of an asset or a basket of several assets.

On Wednesday, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) received a new prospectus for an exchange-traded fund (ETF) called ARK 21Shares Bitcoin Futures Strategy ETF.

If approved, the investment product will track the price of Bitcoin Futures traded on the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) and be listed on its BZX Exchange under the ticker symbol ARKA.

Alpha Architect is the adviser of the fund, responsible for overseeing the investment and business-related operations. ARK’s role, meanwhile, is to provide marketing support to 21Shares, the fund’s “sub-adviser.”

This is not ARK’s first attempt at a Bitcoin-related ETF approval. In June, the firm filed an application for a physically-backed Bitcoin ETF product called “ARK 21Shares Bitcoin EFT” alongside 21Shares.

The SEC has rejected multiple Bitcoin ETF applications over the last few years. The agency is the top financial regulator responsible for authorizing securities-based products, but in recent weeks rumors have circulated that a Bitcoin-based ETF could be on the horizon.

With the new SEC chairmanship under Gary Gensler and increased lobbying from top financial institutions, many crypto followers believe that Bitcoin-based ETFs could hit the U.S. market in near future. Bitcoin proponents became more hopeful at the end of last month when Gensler suggested that he was in favor of a futures-based ETF, rather than a spot-based ETF that many applicants had pitched; Bitcoin rallied following his comments, topping $58,000 Thursday after a 38% rally.

Several firms including VanEck, ProShares, Invesco, and Galaxy Digital have since filed applications for a Bitcoin futures ETF. The agency is currently reviewing more than a dozen filings for Bitcoin-related products.

Despite the growing optimism surrounding a possible ETF, some have argued that it could be several months before there is a major breakthrough. CFRA Resarch analyst Todd Rosenbluth told CNBC that the approval of a Bitcoin ETF could be delayed to Q1 of 2022 this week.

BTC is currently trading at about $57,700. It’s about 10.9% off all-time high.

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