Originally set to launch on April 27th, the Bitcoin ETF from Cosmos Asset Management has recently been postponed. ETF Securities and 21 Shares were expected to facilitate the launch announcing Australia's first-ever Bitcoin spot exchange-traded fund (ETF).  

Spot-based ETFs are becoming increasingly popular as they are expected to bring in trillions of dollars to the virtual currency market. This is because investors can use them for Bitcoin exposure without having to own the actual Bitcoin. Bitcoin ETFs allow people to track BTC prices through things like spot markets and derivatives.  

The delay of the historic Australian ETF came as a surprise to many, including CBOE Australia, a stock exchange located in Sydney, Australia, who cited prior approval from the corporate regulator and national clearinghouse, ASX clear. 

Hamis Treleaven, chief risk officer of ASX previously said, "We are now at our minimum number of clearing participants and that means we are good to go.” 

CBOE cited the delay as a part of routine maintenance procedures saying:  

“Standard checks prior to the commencement of trading are still being completed.” 

Some media outlets believe the explanation is not so simple. In fact, a report from Australian Financial Review (AFR) implies the delay was directly related to a “powerful prime broker.” AFR further detailed their statement saying a “service provider downstream” was responsible for the delay. The service provider is said to be a “prime” or “executing” broker. While the identity of this broker has not been released, it must submit its approval, or else the market maker will be unable to run a functional marketplace.  

The market maker is an entity that is directly responsible for setting the ETF’s bid and ask prices. In other words, it is obviously an essential piece of the puzzle.  

Additional details are expected to develop in the coming days as CBOE plans to provide updates, so stay tuned.   

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