As if the crypto market didn't get its share of bad news this week, Bakkt CEO Kelly Loeffler announced Tuesday that the company will delay the much-anticipated launch of its Bitcoin futures platform to January 24. Bakkt previously anticipated launching the futures trading on Dec. 12, 2018.
In an announcement on Medium, Loeffler expanded, saying that “given the volume of interest in Bakkt and work required to get all of the pieces in place, we will now be targeting January 24, 2019 for our launch to ensure that our participants are ready to trade on Day 1."
Many experts believe that the launch of Bakkt could also prove to be a major step towards the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) approving Bitcoin ETFs (Exchange-Traded Fund). In previous ETF rejections, the SEC had explained that the BTC futures market was not sufficiently liquid, something which is expected to change with Bakkt.
While in Bakkt each purchase of USD/BTC futures contract will be backed by a physical delivery of one bitcoin in the client’s account at the time of settlement, in an ETF, no actual crypto assets exchange hands.
“On the regulatory front, we continue to work closely with the CFTC as they conduct their thorough review of the Bakkt™ Bitcoin Daily Futures contract and the Bakkt Warehouse. These products represent a critical shift in the evolution of crypto markets toward more accessible, useful, and regulated instruments," wrote Loeffler.
In her announcement today Loeffler noted: "As is often true with product launches, there are new processes, risks and mitigants to test and re-test, and in the case of crypto, a new asset class to which these resources are being applied. So it makes sense to adjust our timeline as we work with the industry toward launch."
Loeffler added that Bakkt will have insurance for Bitcoin in cold storage and is in the process of securing insurance for the warm wallet within the Bakkt Warehouse architecture.