SEC Grants Approval for First-Ever Spot Bitcoin ETFs in Historic Decision
In a landmark move, the US Securities and Exchange Commission has officially approved the registration statements for several spot Bitcoin ETFs. The decision paves the way for the launch of the first-ever regulated investment vehicles providing direct exposure to Bitcoin prices on the US market. While the approval documents were briefly and prematurely published on the SEC website, the regulator has now made the determinations public, approving applications from issuers like Grayscale, VanEck, Fidelity and ARK Invest.
Some analysts project billions flowing into the new products in the coming year as demand from institutional investors is met. Fees for the ETFs will range from 0.2% to 1.5%, with Grayscale charging the highest rate. With the applications approved, the industry now awaits details on when trading will commence for the groundbreaking investment products.
Lack of 2FA Blamed for SEC Twitter Breach Spreading FUD
The SEC has stated that a hacker gained access to its Twitter account yesterday, posting a fake announcement of US spot Bitcoin ETF approvals without having access to any internal draft communications. An SEC spokesperson confirmed to Decrypt that no elements of the compromised tweet, which included a fabricated quote attributed to SEC Chair Gary Gensler, were created internally. The FBI is now investigating the breach to the unsecured Twitter account, which resulted from absence of two-factor authentication protection.
Despite theories that an early draft tweet was prematurely published, the attack appeared sophisticated in replicating the regulator's language around digital assets. Despite the hack being revealed, Bitcoin plunged on the news before recovering, underscoring the market impact of any developments around long-awaited ETF approval.
US Bitcoin ETF Approval Could Spur Crypto Development Across Asia
The approval of spot Bitcoin ETFs in the US is expected to have significant impacts across Asia, according to industry insiders. Animoca Brands cofounder Yat Siu stated that openness to capitalism in the region combined with clearer crypto regulations could see the developments spur more entrepreneurship. Experts named Hong Kong and Singapore as possible next locations to roll out similar investment vehicles.
While variables like scale of capital influx exist, representatives from exchanges and infrastructure firms expressed confidence Asia will embrace the products as institutional interest rises. Japanese regulators may also expedite discussions on their own offering. Hong Kong in particular has undertaken reforms cementing its status as a crypto hub and fundraising is reportedly underway there already for compliant funds.
X Quietly Removes Native NFT Support for Paid Users
Social media platform X (formerly known as Twitter) has removed support for non-fungible tokens just months after rolling out the feature for paid subscribers. The platform formerly allowed Twitter Blue users to showcase NFTs from Ethereum collections as hexagonal profile pictures, linking to additional metadata. However, X has now deleted all documentation of this premium functionality from its support pages without clarification. Curiously, profiles that had set NFTs prior to the change still maintain their hexagonal shape.
The abrupt shift comes as major competitors like Meta also stepped back from crypto asset integrations, and tracks a wider industry trend of declining enthusiasm for NFT promotions on mainstream networks. While X subscribers can still display NFTs, the move signals a potential strategic change regarding blockchain integrations going forward.
Vitalik Buterin Backs 'Modest' 33% Increase to Ethereum Gas Limit
Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin has voiced support for expanding the network's gas limit by 33% during a question and answer session on Reddit. Buterin backed a "modest" increase to around 40 million, up from the current ceiling of 30 million, in order to potentially improve transaction throughput. It would represent the first such hike in nearly three years. Buterin acknowledged the setting has not changed substantially over that lengthy period despite growing usage.
A higher limit could process more activity per block but also increase resource loads. Still, the founder argued it remains a reasonable move even today. As gas fees have risen recently, some see the proposal as a way to help clamp down on costs by boosting overall capacity on the Ethereum blockchain.
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