“In contrast to most of the people that we speak to in the industry, we think the probability that a bitcoin ETF will be approved in 2017 is very low,” analyst Spencer Bogart said in a research note. “To be clear, we don’t see any specific reason to disapprove the Winklevoss Bitcoin ETF, but, instead, think that the confluence of fear, uncertainty and doubt coupled with basic incentives at the SEC will make it very difficult to get approval.”
That could come as news to many of bitcoin’s avid followers who believe the fund will be approved by March 11, which has been set as the deadline for a ruling. Bitcoin was created more than eight years ago as a digital currency and is accepted by more than 100,000 vendors for payment. It has generated controversy through its use in the underworld and because of several high-profile bitcoin thefts.
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“We think the positive effect that a bitcoin ETF would have on the price of bitcoin is vastly underappreciated, and that the probability of approval is drastically overestimated within the industry,” Bogart wrote.
Not to worry, however.
Regardless of whether the ETF becomes reality, Bogart said bitcoin will be fine. Bitcoin recently hit a brief peak above $1,000 and is up 102 percent over the past 12 months.
The Winklevoss brothers did not immediately respond to a request for comment
“Overall, this is a low probability event with a very significant upside,” Bogart said of the ETF. “Ultimately, while it appears there is significant pent-up demand from the investment public for such a vehicle, bitcoin itself certainly doesn’t need an ETF and will continue on regardless of the SEC’s decision.”
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