How ETH ETF Works with Security Label According to Larry Fink

BlackRock CEO Larry Fink suggests that an ETH security label will not be a deal breaker for Ethereum ETFs.

Black and white image of Larry Fink with red laser eyes.
Created by Gabor Kovacs from DailyCoin
  • BlackRock CEO Larry Fink suggests that an ETH security label will not be a deal breaker for Ethereum ETFs.
  • This outcome would, however, require a seismic shift in the crypto industry.
  • According to one expert, this would be the ideal outcome for the SEC.

After over a decade of trying, the crypto industry finally saw spot Bitcoin ETFs over the line in January 2024. With this success, attention has shifted to getting the same green light for similar products backed by Ethereum.

However, just like the former, getting Ethereum ETFs over the line does not look like a cakewalk amid whispers of reluctance from the SEC. Growing uncertainty has been further heightened by reports that the market regulator is probing the Ethereum Foundation to label the asset as a security.

But as some fear this probe to be the final nail in the coffin for pending Ethereum ETF applications, a statement from BlackRock CEO Larry Fink has offered a different perspective. According to the BlackRock chief, an ETH security label would not stop ETFs. But how will that work?

An Ethereum Security Label Not A Deal Breaker?

On Wednesday, March 27, BlackRock’s Larry Fink spoke with Fox Business on various topics, including spot Ethereum ETFs. When Fox Business’ Charles Gasparino asked how a potential Ethereum security classification could affect pending ETF applications, Fink asserted that it would not be “deleterious.”


When asked whether applicants like BlackRock could still get the green light if the SEC classified Ethereum as a security, the BlackRock chief added, “I think so.”

Fink’s sentiments contradict the prevailing sentiment in crypto circles that an ETH security label could mark the end of Ethereum ETF discussions. As highlighted by the BlackRock chief, the SEC can and does approve ETFs backed by securities. However, these securities will have to meet the SEC’s regulatory requirements.


In this case, a body like the Ethereum Foundation, which oversees the blockchain’s development, will likely have to register with the SEC and file regular disclosures, all of which the crypto community maintains remains impractical for most blockchain projects.

This hypothetical, therefore, hinges on the ability of the SEC to compel Ethereum to register as a security.

The Ideal Outcome for the SEC?

Commenting on Larry Fink’s statements, The ETF Institute co-founder Nate Geraci suggested that getting the security label on Ethereum before approving spot ETFs would be the ideal outcome for the agency.

“This actually makes some sense & could allow SEC to thread needle given they already approved eth futures ETFs… If SEC can pull off, they get what they want (eth = security) w/out facing Grayscale-esque lawsuit,” he wrote.

One of the biggest arguments the SEC has had against spot crypto ETFs is the claim that crypto assets are unregistered securities lacking proper disclosures and, as such, are unsafe for the investing public.

However, as Geraci alluded to, the SEC’s approval of futures ETFs tracking these assets is antithetical to its stance against spot ETFs, as successfully argued by Grayscale in its appeal of the SEC’s decision to initially reject its spot Bitcoin ETF application.

This successful Grayscale appeal, in many ways, may have forced the SEC’s hands to approve spot Bitcoin ETFs, as SEC Chair Gary Gensler cited the ruling in his deciding vote. The agency would no doubt prefer to avoid similar lawsuits from Ethereum ETF applicants. 

Regardless of these considerations, most experts maintain that the chances of an Ethereum ETF approval remain significantly low, citing a lack of engagement between the SEC and applicants.

Grayscale Chief Legal Officer Craig Salm has tried to downplay these sentiments, suggesting that most of the heavy lifting was already done with spot Bitcoin ETFs.

Amid the back and forth, all eyes remain fixed on the final deadline for an SEC decision on pending applications in May 2024.

On the Flipside

  • With barely two months to go, it is unclear how the SEC will label Ethereum a security and compel the Ethereum Foundation to comply with disclosure requirements before the May deadline.
  • The details of the SEC probe of the Ethereum Foundation remain unclear.

Why This Matters

BlackRock is the world’s largest asset manager, with over $10 trillion in assets under management (AuM). The firm’s near-excellent track record of gaining ETF approvals put a lot of weight behind Larry Fink’s statements.

Read this for more on the Ethereum ETF drama:

Ethereum ETF Approval Odds Dim to 25% Due to SEC’s Inaction

Stay up to date with the latest from the SEC case against Coinbase:

Coinbase Loses SEC Case Dismissal Bid: How Big Is the Blow?

This article is for information purposes only and should not be considered trading or investment advice. Nothing herein shall be construed as financial, legal, or tax advice. Trading forex, cryptocurrencies, and CFDs pose a considerable risk of loss.

Okoya David

David Okoya is a crypto news reporter at DailyCoin based in Nigeria. He covers various topics related to the cryptocurrency industry, including exchanges, regulations, and price movements, and strives to bring fresh angles to breaking news. With experience as a freelance crypto news writer, David upholds the highest journalistic standards, telling complete stories and answering lingering questions whenever possible.