The hope of having a Bitcoin ETF (exchange-traded fund) in the U.S. may see the light of day, if other large exchanges offer a good indication. On Saturday, Switzerland's SIX Swiss Exchange has decided to list the first cryptocurrency ETF (under the umbrella of ETPs (exchange-traded products). While the U.S.-hopefuls (VanEck / SolidX) aim to list a purely Bitcoin ETF, SIX Swiss' ETF will be comprised of Bitcoin, XRP, Ethereum, Litecoin and BCH. This new ETF has been backed by the Swiss start-up company, Amun AG
, and will be listed under the aptly-named index of, "HODL5". Interestingly, the management firm, VanEck, was chosen the Amun AG's crypto-index.
Amun AG believes that having the ETF listed on the Swiss SIX exchange will make investing in the crypto-space more palatable to new crypto investors. Amun AG's CEO, Hany Rashawn, explained his sentiment in a September interview with Bloomberg:
“This was born out of our frustration at seeing vast swathes of the world excluded from easily participating in the digital assets revolution (...) We want to make buying crypto as easy as buying a stock.”
The ETF will allow for derivative-pricing of the of the 5 cryptocurrencies which make up the index and will be traded intraday. While 5 cryptocurrencies will make up the index, Bitcoin will make up about half, then XRP (Ripple) at about 25%, Ether at 16.7% and BCH and Litecoin rounding it out at 5.2 and 3%, respectively. The SIX Swiss exchange is currently the fourth largest
in Europe, with an approximate $1.6 trillion market cap. Rashawn further explained Amun AG's choice of Switzerland for listing their crypto ETF:
“After exploring this across 23 different exchanges and territories around the world, we settled on Switzerland. We believe this to be the best jurisdiction for our base and intend, after launching our initial products on the Swiss exchange, to both launch additional products as well as dual-list across additional geographies and stock exchanges.”
While the United State's SEC has been tight-lipped, and even going to far to remove the public feedback section about the acceptance of a Bitcoin ETF from their site, one could presume that a successful venture by SIX Swiss would bode well for an addition to a U.S. exchange. The SEC has until February 2019 to make a final decision about listing the VanEck/SolidX ETF in the U.S.