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BlackRock, the world’s largest asset manager, is close to launching its Ethereum exchange-traded fund (ETF). That’s because on May 28, the company filed an amended S-1 registration statement with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). This is a necessary step before negotiations begin.

The order came nearly a week after the SEC approved Forms 19b-4 for eight Ethereum ETFs, including BlackRock’s iShares Ethereum Trust. On May 24, the SEC allowed the NYSE Arca, Nasdaq, and Cboe BZX exchanges to list and trade spot Ether ETFs. This preliminary decision benefited, in addition to BlackRock, companies such as Grayscale, Bitwise, VanEck, Fidelity, ARK, 21Shares, Invesco, Galaxy and Franklin Templeton.

Despite this preliminary approval, the SEC still needs to approve the S-1 forms before trading can begin. In the amended form of the S-1, BlackRock said its fund launched on May 21, with the initial investor purchasing 400,000 shares at $25 each. These shares will have the symbol “ETHA”. The company also highlighted that it will not use the fund’s Ethereum for staking.

Ethereum ETFs may open trading in June or July

Eric Balchunas, senior ETF analyst at Bloomberg, expects other candidates to file updated S-1 filings soon. He believes that while funds could open trading before the end of June, early July is more likely. This is because the SEC may request some adjustments. James Seyffart, another Bloomberg analyst, commented on the joint work between issuers and the SEC for Ethereum ETF spot launches, considering this as a positive sign.

In addition to BlackRock, Ethereum ETFs proposed by Fidelity, VanEck, and Franklin Templeton are also listed on the Depository Trust and Clearing Corporation (DTCC). DTCC is responsible for clearing and settlement services for securities transactions. Listing a ticker on the DTCC means the security can potentially be sued for its services, although it will still require all regulatory approvals for trading.

On the other hand, Vanguard, which manages $7.7 trillion in assets, has stated that it will not allow spot trading of Ethereum ETFs on its platform. The company had not allowed spot Bitcoin ETFs when launched in January, arguing that cryptocurrency products do not align with its offerings focused on traditional asset classes.

Meanwhile, Brazilian firm Hashdex withdrew its spot Ethereum ETF application after its Form 19b-4 failed to receive approval from the SEC. The proposal was withdrawn on May 24, a day after the SEC approved eight rival funds. Hashdex had entered the Ethereum ETF race in November, proposing a fund that would offer exposure to both Ether spot contracts and Ethereum futures contracts.

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