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The Winklevoss Bitcoin ETF ticker symbol is BATS: COIN.
The Winklevoss Bitcoin Trust – the exchange-traded fund's formal name – announced the COIN symbol in the fourth amendment to its S-1 filing in July 2014. At the time, the Winklevoss ETF planned to trade on the Nasdaq exchange.
"COIN" refers of course to "Bitcoin," the digital currency upon which the Winklevoss Bitcoin ETF is based. The choice of ticker symbol mimics that of the SPDR Gold Trust (NYSE Arca: GLD), which simply dropped the vowel from the word "gold."
That shift to the Bats BZX Exchange was made known in the fifth amendment to the S-1, filed in July 2016. That's how we arrived at BATS: COIN as the Winklevoss Bitcoin ETF ticker symbol.
And don't feel badly if you haven't heard of the Bats BZX Exchange. It's run by Bats Global Markets, a worldwide stock exchange operator that was founded in 2005. That's pretty new compared to its rivals, the New York Stock Exchange (founded 1817) and the Nasdaq (founded 1971).
Bats Global Markets was acquired on Feb. 28 by the Chicago Board Options Exchange (Nasdaq: CBOE).
But the Bats BZX Exchange has had a bigger role than just serving as the place where the Winklevoss ETF will be listed…
The One Thing Holding Up a BATS: COIN ETF IPO
It was up to Bats BZX to file for a "rule change" with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
A rule change is needed because the Winklevoss Bitcoin ETF is to be based on a digital commodity as opposed to a physical commodity like gold. Such an ETF is unprecedented – the biggest reason why the SEC approval process has dragged on for well over three years.
But law states the SEC can delay a decision on a requested rule change for only so long. The deadline is March 11. There can be no Winklevoss Bitcoin ETF IPO until the SEC approves this rule.
At that point, the SEC has three options…
- Approve the COIN ETF rule change
- Deny the COIN ETF rule change
- Do nothing
Here's how things will play out in each scenario…