Grayscale sues SEC

Grayscale Investments has sued the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) after an application to convert its flagship Grayscale Bitcoin (GBTC) Trust into an exchange-traded fund (ETF) was rejected.

On Wednesday, June 29, the rejection was announced amid ongoing concerns from the SEC.

The included the role of Tether in the BTC ecosystem, market manipulation and fraud among crypto, and the lack of a surveillance-sharing agreement between a “regulated market of significant size”, and a regulated exchange.

This legal battle has been less than fleeting, the investment fund has been fighting its corner ever since the initial approval to transition the fund was requested in October.

Just days before the decision was made, Grayscale CEO Michael Sonnenshein wrote a letter to investors to announce that the company was “unequivocally committed” to getting the GBTC converted to an ETF

However, all efforts were not enough for the regulator who denied the ongoing request after the 240-day deadline (ending July 6) to decide on Grayscale’s request was concluded early.

As many expected, Grayscale filed a suit against the SEC less than an hour after the decision was made to deny the firm’s approval to covert its $12.9bn trust.

Grayscale senior legal strategist and former US solicitor general Donald Verrilli Jr said: “As Grayscale and the team at Davis Polk & Wardwell have outlined, the SEC is failing to apply consistent treatment to similar investment vehicles, and is therefore acting arbitrarily and capriciously in violation of the Administrative Procedure Act and Securities Exchange Act of 1934.”

To date, only a handful of BTC ETFs have been approved to trade by the SEC, and the legal battle for Grayscale’s trust continues.

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Updated: 07/01/2022 — 17:00