Analysts at Odds Over Ethereum ETF Potential

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  • The prospect of an Ethereum ETF has divided analysts’ predictions after the SEC delayed BlackRock’s filing decision
  • Standard Chartered believes approval could come in May whereas TD Cowen Washington Research Group believes that a decision before 2025 is not on the cards
  • Decisions on ETF filings from VanEck and Ark 21Shares are slated for May

Analysts are at odds over the potential of an Ethereum ETF this year after the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) delayed any potential approval until May at the earliest. Decisions on filings from VanEck and Ark 21Shares are now all due on that date, and Standard Chartered has predicted that approval will be granted, an analysis which is at odds with that of TD Cowen Washington Research Group, which believes that approval might not come until 2026. ETF analyst Eric Balchunas, meanwhile, has predicted a final decision will be made on all pending spot Ether ETFs in May, similar to the way the SEC handled all 11 Bitcoin ETF applications this month. 

Standard Chartered Confident of May Approval

No one was surprised when the SEC kicked BlackRock’s Ethereum ETF application down the road on Monday, citing a need for further analysis before it could decide one way or the other. This move means that BlackRock’s application has a hard deadline of August 7, nine weeks after the decision must be made on applications from VanEck and Ark 21Shares. However, Balchunas, who accurately predicted the timeframe of the Bitcoin ETF approval, believes that the SEC will approve all three in May, according to Cointelegraph.

This outlook has been backed by Standard Chartered, which believes that the price of ether will rise to $4,000 ahead of a mass approval on May 23. That price prediction, however, is based on multiple assumptions being true, including general market sentiment for approval remaining low, implied-volatility being wrong, and the SEC approving multiple applications on the same day.

TD Cowen Says Not Before 2025

Analysts at investment bank TD Cowen are not so sure, however, and believe that Ethereum will not get an ETF  until late 2025 or early 2026, and certainly not before the November 2024 election:

We do not expect the SEC in 2024 to approve a spot Ethereum ETF. This is a political call. We believe there is no upside for SEC Chair Gary Gensler to approve a spot Ethereum ETF given how upset progressive Democrats were over the agency’s approval of a spot bitcoin ETF earlier this month.

The bank added that Gensler is in no rush to double the number of crypto ETFs, adding that his cautious approach is “consistent with his broader approach to crypto, which is to move incrementally and slowly when it comes to providing regulatory approvals or clarity.”