Several Ethereum futures exchange-traded funds (ETFs) have begun trading in the United States, marking a significant development in the cryptocurrency investment landscape.
Leading investment firms, including ProShares, VanEck, Bitwise, Valkyrie, Kelly, and Volshares, collectively launched a total of nine ETFs on the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) on Monday.
ProShares introduced three funds: the Ether Strategy Fund (EETH), the Bitcoin and Ether Strategy ETF (BETH), and the Bitcoin and Ether Equal Strategy ETF (BETE). Bitwise unveiled its Bitwise Ethereum Strategy ETF (AETH) and Bitwise Bitcoin and Ether Equal Weight Strategy ETF (BTOP). VanEck’s Ethereum Strategy ETF (EFUT) also commenced trading, along with Valkyrie’s Bitcoin and Ether Strategy ETF (BTF), and Volshares introduced its Ether Strategy ETF (ETHU). Brazilian fund manager Hashdex also launched its Ether Strategy ETF (EX).
Despite the anticipation surrounding these ETFs, their initial trading volumes have been modest. As of 11:25 am ET, the combined trading volume for all nine ETFs amounted to just under $2 million, according to Bloomberg Intelligence analyst Eric Bulchunas, who described the volume as “meh” on Twitter. Among them, Valkyrie’s BTF had the highest trading activity, with approximately $787,000 worth of shares changing hands at that time.
These ETFs track the future price of Ethereum rather than the asset itself, providing investors with exposure to potential future price movements. They have been introduced as investors await the approval of a spot crypto ETF, which would allow investors to gain exposure to cryptocurrencies at their current prices without owning the actual assets.
The launch of Ethereum futures ETFs follows the successful introduction of the first Bitcoin futures ETF on the New York Stock Exchange in 2021, which traded nearly $1 billion worth of shares on its debut. However, the cryptocurrency market has evolved since then, with Bitcoin’s price currently trading at approximately 60% lower than its peak during the bull market.
The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is currently reviewing applications for spot crypto ETFs from major players in the financial industry, including BlackRock. Until such ETFs are approved, investors seeking exposure to cryptocurrencies have the option to trade futures contracts or acquire the digital assets directly.
At the time of writing, the price of Ethereum stood at $1,690, with a 24-hour increase of 0.5% and a nearly 7% rise over the past week, according to CoinGecko.