SEC Delays Ruling on Ethereum ETF to July 5th

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Michael Saylor Discloses That MicroStrategy Bought 850 BTC in January; OKX Under Investigation in South Korea

The decision by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to delay its ruling on the proposal for a spot Ethereum ETF, submitted by Invesco and Galaxy Digital, marks another chapter in the regulator’s cautious approach to cryptocurrency-based financial products. This delay, as reported by James Seyffart, a senior Bloomberg analyst specializing in ETFs, was expected, considering the SEC’s usual stance on such requests.

The SEC exercises its discretion, grounded in Section 19(b)(2) of the Securities Exchange Act, to extend the 45 days for public comment reception to a maximum of 90 days if necessary for thorough analysis. This practice of postponement is not exclusive to the proposal by Invesco and Galaxy Digital; other applications, such as Fidelity Investments for a spot Ethereum ETF, have also experienced delays.

Approximately two weeks ago, the SEC postponed its verdict on Fidelity’s proposal, extending the review period for the proposed rule change by another 45 days. This shifted the original deadline of January 20, 2024, for the rule change related to Fidelity’s Fund to March 5, 2024.

Furthermore, BlackRock faced a similar situation with its spot Ethereum ETF application, postponed until March 10, 2024. The reason behind this delay was the lack of public feedback, highlighting the need for more time for proper consideration.

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Michael Saylor discloses MicroStrategy bought 850 BTC in January

MicroStrategy founder Michael Saylor disclosed that the company bought an additional 850 Bitcoins (BTC) in January. The purchases took ownership in the cryptocurrency to 190,000, or a total cost of $5.93 billion as of February 5, 2024.

According to its Q4 2023 results, MicroStrategy bought 31,755 Bitcoins since the end of Q3. The Bitcoins were acquired at an average price of $39,411, equivalent to $1.25 billion.

Bitcoin purchases helped MicroStrategy to return to profit, posting a net income of $89 million in Q4, compared to a loss of $249.7 million in the comparable quarter of 2022. The profit was boosted by the tax benefit of holding the cryptocurrency.

OKX Under Investigation in South Korea

Recent investigations have unearthed that OKX may have sidestepped regulations by engaging in unreported operations within South Korea. The Digital Asset Exchange Association (DAXA) reported these findings to the FIU, prompting an in-depth examination of the matter. 

The investigation focuses on OKX’s promotional tactics. Reportedly, they involved leveraging domestic influencers to attract Korean users, a strategy that has raised significant legal and ethical questions.

The issue started with the OKX website’s lack of Korean language support. This is essential for foreign exchanges in Korea. Financial authorities have also targeted other foreign exchanges for similar issues. They stress the need for clear and lawful dealings with Korean customers.

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