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The Securities and Exchange Commission said Tuesday afternoon that advertising for bitcoin ETFs on social media was false.
An SEC spokesperson told CNBC: “The SEC's @SECGov
A false social media post said the SEC approved Bitcoin ETFs. Bitcoin's price rose briefly after the initial publication, but then quickly fell below $46,000.
The SEC is expected to make a decision on bitcoin ETFs this week after opposing it for years. More than a dozen asset managers have applied to create such a fund, including several that filed updated registration statements Tuesday morning.
The price of the largest cryptocurrency has soared in recent months, partly due to growing optimism over the approval of so-called spot bitcoin ETFs. Funds that track bitcoin futures prices are already trading on exchanges in the United States.
Cryptocurrency advocates assert that the launch of Bitcoin spot funds could bring a new type of investor to the digital asset. ETFs are a tool that financial advisors regularly use. The idea is that advisors and investors spooked by the complexities surrounding holding Bitcoin will be more willing and able to buy cryptocurrencies in an ETF wrapper.
SEC Chairman Gary Gensler has been an outspoken opponent of cryptocurrencies during his tenure, and the SEC has brought legal action against several major cryptocurrency exchanges. Gensler used social media earlier in the week to urge investors to be cautious when purchasing cryptocurrency-related products.
Last year, the SEC lost a lawsuit against crypto-asset manager Grayscale, which wanted to convert an over-the-counter trust holding bitcoin into an ETF. The SEC declined to appeal that ruling, sparking speculation that the regulatory body will soon approve bitcoin ETFs.
Correction: An earlier version of this story said the SEC had approved Bitcoin ETFs. The story has been updated to reflect that a false social media post was made.
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