It is COIN for Winklevoss Bitcoin ETF
Winklevoss’ COIN Closes in on Debut
The Winklevoss twins, Cameron and Tyler, have moved closer to making the Winklevoss Bitcoin ETF a reality. As reported earlier, their ETF will trade at Nasdaq, but now they have settled on a ticker. In a move that surprised many, the fund has settled on ‘COIN’ as its ticker symbol.
The Winklevoss Bitcoin ETF is seeking the approval of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The fund amended its S-1 filing with SEC, introducing the COIN ticker on July 1, one year after it begun the process of establishing the first ever over-the-counter Bitcoin ETF. While the ETF has stayed in the regulatory limbo longer than most people would expect, the brothers are moving closer to completing this exasperatingly long process. The fund will be probably available by the fall of 2014.
Amended S-1 Summary
The latest update is the fourth since Cameron and Tyler begun this process. The update has a few new changes about the exchange traded fund. They include:
- The fund will be listed at Nasdaq OMX, under the ticker COIN.
- Its structure will be analogous to that of SPDR Gold Trust ETF, (NYSE Arca: GLD).
- It will issue five shares of the fund for one bitcoin, rounding down to about $120 per share according to the current bitcoin price of over $600.
In addition to the minor tweaks in the ETF, the amended S-1 recaps on the latest legislative developments globally, including the Switzerland’s latest stand on virtual currency and the ban in Bolivia. It also talks of the 51% attack and warns of the problem of maintaining core developers.
As expected, the twins chose a ticker that gives the fund a currency theme. However, the critics would argue that COIN is more general and doesn’t specifically point at the digital currency theme.
SecondMarket on Counter-Attack
As we still wait for the arrival of the first ever ETF, SecondMarket, which owns Bitcoin Investment Trust (BIT) is on the verge of circumventing the tedious regulatory process by changing it its BIT into an open fund for all.
Since BIT approval as an ETF does not need to go through the prerequisites for launching, BIT ETF is likely to come probably around the same time with Winklevoss Bitcoin ETF. However, BIT will have to get the consent of OTC Markets and Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA).
Who would have thought that COIN was available all this time? In my earlier article on this story, I’d suggested that the Winklevoss Bitcoin ETF would not be able to use COIN as it was in use by a company. Yes, it was in use, but it became available in June 2013 when the company using it merged with another and chose to use another ticker.
The news the SecondMarket is also going for a bitcoin ETF (open for all investors) now guarantees the bitcoin community of an ETF. But that story aside, what do you think of the Winklevoss Bitcoin ETF’s ticker choice?