Bitcoin prices spiked 10 percent to $29,900 on Monday following rumors of BlackRock’s iShares Bitcoin spot ETF application approval in the U.S. However, the prices slid back following confirmations that the rumors were false.
In a now-deleted social media post, digital news outlet Cointelegraph wrote, “BREAKING: SEC APPROVES ISHARES BITCOIN SPOT ETF,” which sparked community enthusiasm. iShares Bitcoin Trust is a highly anticipated bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) by BlackRock, the world’s biggest asset manager.
Bloomberg ETF analyst James Seyffart was among the first to counter the misinformation. “I believe this to be fake news,” he commented on Cointelegraph’s post minutes after it was posted. The analyst further confirmed the news had been false on Bloomberg TV live, along with fellow analyst Eric Bachulnas.
Fox Business journalist Eleanor Terrett also received confirmation from BlackRock that debunked the claim. The journalist said, “BlackRock has just confirmed to me that this is false. Their application is still under review.”
A few hours later, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) also posted a warning on social media. “Careful what you read on the internet,” it said. “The best source of information about the SEC is the SEC.”
While Cointelegraph has addressed the fake news, its source remains unclear.
In the aftermath, hundreds of millions of dollars in Bitcoin futures open interest were flushed out. An anonymous crypto whale reported losing $49,000 in trade reversals, while crypto information platform Coinglass reported that nearly 40,000 crypto traders had been liquidated within 24 hours.
Now, Bitcoin is up about three percent, hovering around the $28,000 level. Though the incident serves as a cautionary tale, some hopeful investors are delighted to learn that the anticipation for a spot in the Bitcoin ETF remains high.
Should the Bitcoin ETF applications be approved, investments in the sector are expected to soar. More than 10 spot Bitcoin ETF applications are under review by the SEC, with prominent asset management company Ark Invest among those who applied.
Ark Invest chief investment officer Cathie Wood is optimistic about the approval. “I do think the SEC is moving now,” she said in a recent interview. “And we don’t think that the SEC will approve just one. They will probably approve a group of them.”
Digital wealth platform Yield App chief investment officer Lucas Kiely said that Cointelegraph’s false alarm was a “good dress rehearsal” for when the watchdog delivers its final decision on Bitcoin ETF applications.
“Headline risk is creating a lot of volatility ahead of this SEC announcement,” Kiely said.
Ben Laidler, global markets strategist at financial services company eToro, pointed out that the market is sensitive at the moment. “Crypto markets have just shown how sensitive they are to any potential good news with their premature rally today on rumors of the approval of a spot bitcoin ETF,” he said.
“The move does show how monomaniacally obsessed the bitcoin market is with the coming spot ETFs,” said the head of research at London crypto firm Enigma Securities, Joseph Edwards.
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