Bitcoin Futures: Bakkt could get regulator say-so for BTC futures next week

Unconfirmed: US Regulators Could Approve Bakkt BTC Futures Launch in First Week of November
The Intercontinental Exchange’s (ICE) Bakkt cryptocurrency platform could get approval to launch its physically-delivered Bitcoin (BTC) futures product from U.S. regulators next week, an unconfirmed anonymous source told tech outlet The Block Thursday, Oct. 25.

Bakkt, which seeks to create a “regulated ecosystem” for institutional investors looking to gain exposure to cryptocurrency, had previously confirmed it planned to launch its futures product Dec. 12.

Should regulators give the project the green light, ICE’s Bakkt will begin launching its Bitcoin (USD) Daily Futures Contract for clients as soon as the first week of next month, according to an unnamed source “with direct knowledge of the situation,” The Block says.

The unnamed source also told the publication that Chicago trading shop DV Trading will trade Bakkt’s product.

Concerns that non-custodial options will ultimately detract from the industry’s credibility have surfaced from cryptocurrency figures in particular, with crypto enthusiast Andreas Antonopoulos warning over the impact of regulators approving Bitcoin exchange-traded funds (ETF) in the future.

Non-physical Bitcoin futures first launched from CBOE and CME Group in December 2017. Poor returns have combined with volatility in markets close to settlement dates, sparking debate among analysts.

Bitcoin [BTC] futures contract by Bakkt will change SEC’s viewpoint on ETF, confirms Mike Novogratz
Recently, New York Exchange’s parent company, Intercontinental Exchange [ICE], announced that they will be launching a cryptocurrency trading platform, which will focus on providing services for Bitcoin [BTC] and other cryptocurrencies. The launch is scheduled for November 2017. The news stirred up the entire cryptocurrency community as it would become the gateway for institutional investors to step into the market.

Moreover, 22nd October’s announcement by ICE has particularly drawn a majority of the crypto community’s attention. ICE announced that they would be launching Bitcoin daily futures contract which can be traded from December 12, 2018.

The notice read that it would physically deliver Bitcoin futures contract, which would be stored in ICE’s Digital Asset warehouse and cleared by ICE Clear US. More details on the Bitcoin Futures contract are expected to be released ahead of the launch.

The announcement seems to have had a positive impact on Mike Novogratz, the CEO of Galaxy Digital, as he agreed to a Twitterati’s post about how the move could change US States and Exchanges Commission [SEC]’s standpoint on Bitcoin ETF. This was because they rejected nine Bitcoin ETFs, stating inadequate liquidity in the futures market.

Joseph Young, an analyst, and investor said on Twitter:

“Bakkt will officially begin clearing Bitcoin futures on Dec 12, 2018. Previously, the US SEC rejected 9 Bitcoin ETFs that based their price on the futures market because the BTC futures market was not sufficiently liquid. The entrance of Bakkt could change the viewpoint of SEC”

Mike Novogratz, replied:

“It will.”

However, there were a few who disagreed with Mike Novogratz. CourbetCryptau, a Twitterati said:

“The SEC wants to see “significant markets” – so you can’t make the claim that “it will” before the market has even opened. Moreso, what does “significant” mean. Spot $BTC is little under $4b and current futures is like $300m? I really don’t think @Bakkt will change this.”

Hodl Report, another Twitterati said:

“will NOT! Agree to disagree, but took SEC a long time for copper and gold, you know this, $BTC no different. Custodial issues (Yes, Baakt solves some) but WALLETS!!!! wallet issues are ALL OVER THE PLACE! Easy to make mistakes and trap or lose coin, insecure, never mind scams!”

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Aamir Kapoor is a fintech writer specializing in cryptocurrency and blockchain. He has a background in finance and banking and was a researcher.