Exchange-traded fund issuer Direxion has filed for a product that would enable speculators to buy contracts that short the price of Bitcoin.
In a filing made to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Oct. 26, the company unveiled the Direxion Bitcoin Strategy Bear ETF. Like other futures products, it will not invest directly in BTC, but will instead maintain managed short exposure position contracts issued by the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME).
Direxion stated that the fund may invest in other BTC futures, money market funds, deposit accounts, or short-term debt instruments. However, the firm did issue a dire warning that the value of the product could go to zero.
“The value of an investment in the Fund could decline significantly and without warning, including to zero. You should be prepared to lose your entire investment.”
Bloomberg senior ETF analyst Eric Balchunas described it as an inverse Bitcoin ETF. He reported that the company already has a ‘-1x BTC futures ETF’ in Canada called BITI, adding “while it’s gotten pretty wrecked, when it works it WORKS (as Bitcoin tends to sells off fast).”
INVERSE BITCOIN ETF: Direxion just filed for a -1x Bitcoin Futures ETF, which will seek to be short front month bitcoin futures, basically the $XIV of $BITO.. This comes mere hours after the first levered bitcoin ETF was filed. pic.twitter.com/bN2m7pIZw5
— Eric Balchunas (@EricBalchunas) October 26, 2021
Direxion originally filed for a Bitcoin ETF in 2018 but it ended up in the queue with all of the others that the SEC had delayed at the time.
Bloomberg reported that on Oct. 26, Valkyrie filed for a leveraged BTC futures ETF that will offer 1.25x exposure to the asset. If approved, it will trade under the ticker BTFX and can hold futures, swaps, options, and forwards.
Not everyone was impressed with the minimal leverage available, with user VandelayBTC referring to a Zoolander meme to throw shade.
1.25x? What is this? Leverage for ants?
— Vandelay ₿TC Industries (@VandelayBTC) October 26, 2021
Commenting on the creative new futures products being proposed at the moment, ETF Store President Nate Geraci said that there will be more of these types of filings and ETH futures before a spot product wins approval.
“SEC has blessed CME Bitcoin futures from a regulatory perspective. If these leveraged & inverse products exist in other blessed markets, then no reason not to exist here.”
As if in response to the bearish product proposal, Bitcoin prices have retreated 3.6% over the past 24 hours to trade at $60,787 at the time of writing.