Out, Damned Spot! SEC Commissioner Hester Peirce Reflects on Bitcoin Spot ETP Approval

SEC Commissioner Hester M. Peirce standing beside the US flag and a bitcoin logo stamped approved

SEC Commissioner Hester M. Peirce provides a candid reflection on the long-awaited approval of spot Bitcoin Exchange-Traded Products (ETPs) in a statement released on January 10, 2024. The statement outlines the Commissioner’s views on the historical hurdles faced by Bitcoin-based products and the regulatory landscape surrounding them.

A Contentious Journey to Spot Bitcoin ETF Approval

In a remarkable statement released on January 10, 2024, SEC Commissioner Hester M. Peirce reflects on the long and contentious journey leading to the approval of spot Bitcoin Exchange-Traded Products (ETPs). The Commissioner delves into the regulatory challenges faced by Bitcoin-based products over the past decade, expressing both celebration for investor rights and concern over the regulatory landscape.

Persistence Led to the Approval of Innovative Financial Products

Peirce emphasizes the significance of American investors gaining the right to express their thoughts on Bitcoin by trading spot Bitcoin ETPs. The statement underscores the persistence of market participants in navigating a complex regulatory environment, ultimately leading to the approval of these innovative financial products.

The Commissioner acknowledges the celebratory aspect of this milestone while also addressing the harms caused by the disparate treatment of spot Bitcoin products over the years.

In a reflective statement, SEC Commissioner Hester M. Peirce outlines the repercussions of the regulatory treatment of spot Bitcoin Exchange-Traded Products (ETPs).

“Today’s order does not undo the many harms created by the disparate treatment of spot bitcoin products.”


Disproportionate Attention Given to Filings

First, the arbitrary handling of applications is predicted to damage the SEC’s reputation well beyond the crypto sphere, eroding public trust and hindering effective market regulation.

Second, the disproportionate attention given to these filings has diverted considerable staff resources away from critical tasks, amounting to millions of dollars and over ten years of effort. Third, the SEC’s actions have blurred the understanding of its role, as it strayed from its authorized function by withholding investments it disapproves of from the public.

Perseverance Birthed a Product Investors Desire

Fourth, deviating from normal standards in evaluating spot Bitcoin ETPs created an artificial frenzy, contributing to the current circus-like atmosphere. Lastly, the SEC’s approach has alienated innovators in the space, signaling regulatory prejudice and prompting a costly legal battle for product launches.

Commissioner Peirce concludes on a celebratory note, not for Bitcoin itself, but for the right of American investors to engage with spot Bitcoin ETPs and applauds the perseverance of market participants in bringing forth a product they believe investors desire.

This statement provides a unique insight into the regulatory hurdles, the impact on market participants, and the Commissioner’s perspective on the approval of spot Bitcoin ETPs. It serves as a notable contribution to the ongoing dialogue surrounding the intersection of traditional finance and digital assets.

While reacting to the release, Gabor Gurbacks, Strategic Advisor at VanEck praised the commissioner for her work, adding that she is one of the reasons why many advocates of the spot Bitcoin ETf never gave up on the effort to see it approved.

Author: Jinka

Jinka is a self-trained crypto journalist, passionate about happenings in the industry.