The possibility of a Bitcoin ETF arrival has created a lot of buzz in the cryptocurrency market, of late. Bitcoin ETF is expected to pool a huge number of institutional players to the crypto markets which, in turn, would mean a massive liquidity and inflow of funds to the crypto space. However, many experts from the crypto industry say that there are very slim chances to the arrival of a Bitcoin ETF before 2019.
Popular Bitcoin supporter and cryptocurrency enthusiast Andreas M. Antonopoulos, however, believes that getting Bitcoin ETF investment product to the crypto market would be a ‘terrible idea’. Last week, Antonopoulos released a video ‘Bitcoin Q&A: Why I’m against ETFs‘ expressing his views about the consequences that Bitcoin ETF would have for the cryptocurrency industry.
Bitcoin ETFs are basically investment products that would allow retail investors to hedge the risk without actually owning the Bitcoins. Bitcoin ETFs take a reserve of the cryptocurrency while making them tradeable instruments in the regulated traditional markets just like the stocks. This way, retail investors can still participate in Bitcoin trading process while affecting its price, but without actually holding the digital currencies or going through other complex tasks like dealing with private keys, hardware tokens, addresses and other similar things. This being said, Antonopoulos calls the Bitcoin enthusiasts second tiered voices.
In his video with the Bitcoin Q&A session, Antonopoulos said that his ideas will “burst the bubble”. He said:
“I’m going to burst your bubble. I know a lot of people really want to see an ETF happen because “to the moon and lambos!” But I think it is a terrible idea. I still think it is going to happen, I just think it is a terrible idea. I’m actually against ETFs.I think a Bitcoin ETF is going to be damaging to the ecosystem.”
He also said that the arrival of Bitcoin ETF could prove to be counterproductive and could open more possibilities of price manipulation for the world’s largest digital currency:
“Everybody is so excited about ETFs. What we have seen in other markets is that when an ETF becomes available, the price really increases dramatically, as suddenly that commodity becomes available to a lot more investors and these investors pile on. But, the other side of it, is that there are always these claims that the commodities markets are heavily manipulated and opening up these ETFs only increase the ability of institutional investors to manipulate the prices of commodities.”
Another problem he raises is the centralization of a decentralized product wherein regulators would be acting as gatekeepers which could also lead to impact the governance of the Bitcoin blockchain network. Moreover, Antonopoulos also talks about the issues that would arrive in case of a fork in the Bitcoin network. He believes that in such case, the Bitcoin ETF companies would break off from the actual network while creating their own corporate version of Bitcoin, “corpocoin”.