Grayscale’s lawsuit against SEC isn’t about Bitcoin, says CEO Michael Sonnenshein

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Grayscale’s lawsuit against SEC isn’t about Bitcoin, says CEO Michael Sonnenshein

By Hassan Maishera - min read

Grayscale filed a lawsuit against the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), and the company’s CEO said the move means so much more than Bitcoin.

Grayscale’s CEO Michael Sonnenshein has revealed that the company’s lawsuit against the SEC isn’t about Bitcoin.

Last year, Grayscale revealed that it was going to file for a Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) with the SEC. However, the SEC rejected the application, as it has done with numerous other spot Bitcoin ETFs submitted by other investment firms.

Grayscale proceeded to file a lawsuit against the SEC in July this year after the regulatory agency rejected Grayscale’s application.

In an interview for Yahoo Finance’s All Markets Summit, Grayscale CEO Michael Sonnenshein pointed out that the lawsuit transcends its own attempts to launch a spot bitcoin ETF. he said;

“We really feel that this lawsuit isn’t about bitcoin. This is about putting forward straightforward common sense legal arguments that really ensure that investors are protected and that the SEC is acting within their mandate.”

The SEC had rejected numerous spot Bitcoin ETF applications over the past few years, citing the cryptocurrency’s vulnerability to market manipulation. 

Grayscale is now asking a federal appeals court in Washington DC, to review the SEC’s decision, adding that the regulatory agency is applying  stricter standards to spot ETFs than to futures ETS

contending that the agency had applied stricter standards to spot ETFs than to futures Emission Trading System (ETS). 

The Grayscale CEO added that;

“We’ve never seen them do this before for any other product, any other commodity that we’ve ever seen. And it applied it very, very stringently to spot bitcoin ETFs, like GBTC [Grayscale Bitcoin Trust], but very leniently to bitcoin futures ETFs. “So, the SEC is really acting outside of its authority under the [Securities and] Exchange Act. And that’s really one of the strongest arguments.”

Sonnenshein complained that the lack of proper regulation in the United States is forcing cryptocurrency companies to flee to other countries. He concluded that;

“You have bills passing across the floor of Congress, both sides of the aisle supporting it. You have companies moving outside the US because our regulatory landscape isn’t catching up fast enough with the innovation taking place here.”

While there is no Bitcoin ETF in the United States, there are other crypto-related ETFs already available to investors.

Last month, BlackRock launched a new blockchain ETF for European customers called the iShares Blockchain Technology UCITS ETF (BLKC).