The current state of the cryptocurrency markets is leading investors to place a significant amount of their hope into future products and events, including the potential approval of the VanEck/SolidX Bitcoin ETF that is currently awaiting the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC’s) approval.
Despite this, one SEC commissioner who is notably bullish on cryptocurrencies, warned investors against placing too much importance on this event, saying that it could be a long time before a Bitcoin ETF is approved.
Hester Peirce, one of five SEC commissioners, made the comments while speaking at a cryptocurrency conference in Washington D.C., and also noted that she is working hard to convince the other commissioners to consider the emerging asset class with an open mind.
It is important to note that a majority ruling is required in order for ETFs to pass, which may jeopardize the Bitcoin ETF’s chances of approval.
“Don’t hold your breath. I do caution people to not live or die on when a crypto or Bitcoin ETF gets approved,” Peirce said. “You all know that I am working on trying to convince my colleagues to have a bit more of an open mind when it comes to [cryptocurrency]. I am not as charming as some other people.”
Although the cryptocurrency industry is expecting a decision of the pending Bitcoin ETF application by early-2019, Peirce further added that approval could come tomorrow, or in 20 years.
Related Reading: BTC/USD Price Analysis: SEC Commissioner Comment on Bitcoin ETF
Comments Regarding Bitcoin ETF Come Amidst Growing Institutionalization
Although the markets are currently sitting at their year-to-date lows, with many cryptocurrencies trading down 90% or more from their 2017 and 2018 highs, the nascent markets are seeing a growing amount of traditional financial institutions entering the markets.
A few developments that could impact the markets in the coming months are the release of the ICE-backed cryptocurrency exchange, Bakkt, and the entrance of major traditional finance companies, including Nasdaq and Fidelity, into the industry.
Peirce also gave some advice to cryptocurrency companies that want to succeed in the largely unregulated industry, saying:
“Get good regulatory advice… there are a lot of landmines…[and] we live in a society that has a lot of old securities laws…You could have the best intensions in the world and you could trip on something that you didn’t mean to trip on.”
Recently, the SEC has been cracking down on crypto-related products that are resembling of securities offerings and has even charged multiple high-profile celebrities for endorsing initial coin offerings (ICOs) without disclosing that they were paid.
Floyd Mayweather Jr. and DJ Khalid were both forced to pay large penalties for endorsing ICOs on their social media accounts, and Mayweather was banned from endorsing any securities products – even when the payment details are disclosed – for the next three years.
Peirce concluded the fireside chat on a positive note, saying that institutionalization of the cryptocurrency markets will happen.