Updated Aug 29, 2023 - Economy

Grayscale's big court win boosts Bitcoin and crypto sentiment

Bitcoin's response to the news was decisive. Data: CoinGecko; Chart: Axios Visuals

A U.S. court sided with the shop behind the world's largest bitcoin trust, better known by its ticker symbol "GBTC."

Why it matters: The price of bitcoin shot through the roof immediately following the news on anticipation that spot ETFs will open up a wave of new demand from previously untapped investors.

Driving the news: A U.S. court of appeals found that the Securities and Exchange Commission's denying Grayscale Investments permission to launch a spot-bitcoin ETF was unreasonable.

Catch up quick: Grayscale sued the SEC in October, arguing that the regulatory agency's decision was arbitrary — the court today agreed.

Details: "The denial of Grayscale's proposal was arbitrary and capricious because the Commission failed to explain its different treatment of similar products. We therefore grant Grayscale's petition and vacate the order," court documents filed Tuesday show.

What they're saying: "This is a monumental step forward for American investors, the Bitcoin ecosystem, and all those who have been advocating for Bitcoin exposure through the added protections of the ETF wrapper," Jennifer Rosenthal, a spokesperson for Grayscale tells Axios.

  • "The Grayscale team and our legal advisors are actively reviewing the details outlined in the Court's opinion and will be pursuing next steps with the SEC," she said.
  • An SEC spokesperson tells Axios that the regulator is reviewing the court's decision to determine next steps.

The intrigue: Grayscale's win could potentially clear the way for the wave of applications for a spot bitcoin ETF from the likes of BlackRock and Ark Invest that have been filed with the SEC.

By the numbers: Bitcoin spiked over 6% Tuesday morning to above $27,600 following the news, before settling into a range around $27, 400, climbing back from its 10% crash earlier this month.

Editor's note: This report was updated with additional details throughout.

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