Ark Invest CEO Cathie Wood addresses Bitcoin ETF approval 'hoax'

An unauthorized user posted fake news on the SEC's X account regarding its Bitcoin ETF decision

Industry expert Cathie Wood commented on a false post on X from Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Chairman Gary Gensler that upended Bitcoin prices and caused confusion for investors.

"I was actually giving an interview, pulled up the tweet, and the first thing I saw was the Bitcoin logo in an SEC tweet. And I said, that's weird," the Ark Invest CEO said on "The Claman Countdown," Wednesday. "Then the second thing I saw was Gary Gensler's picture kind of smiling. That seemed to be a disconnect to me." 

"At the same time I was with Ophelia, who is our partner on 21Shares, and she was getting communication from the CBOE that that seemed to be true, or that something seemed to be about to break. But it turns out it was a hoax or a hack."

GOP SENATORS EVISCERATE SEC FOR ‘COLOSSAL ERROR’ WITH FALSE BITCOIN ETF POST

The SEC X post announcing that it had approved Bitcoin exchange-traded funds to be listed on all registered U.S. securities exchanges came shortly after 4 p.m. ET on Tuesday when the markets were closed.

The post has since been deactivated and replaced with more details. 

"The @SECGov X account was compromised, and an unauthorized post was posted. The SEC has not approved the listing and trading of spot bitcoin exchange-traded products" the post clarified. 

The dupe came as investors are eagerly awaiting the SEC's decision on as many as 10 Bitcoin ETF applications, including Ark's. Wood’s Ark Investment Management in partnership with 21Shares became the first firm to ask for the SEC’s blessing for a spot bitcoin ETF.

SPOT BITCOIN ETF APPROVAL COULD HAPPEN THIS WEEK: STEVEN MCCLURG

In a scathing letter Wednesday, Senators JD Vance, R-Ohio, and Thom Tillis, R-N.C., sharply criticized the SEC for the unauthorized post. The fake news sent Bitcoin prices skyrocketing, and when the SEC retracted the announcement and said its X account was "compromised," cryptocurrency prices came crashing back down. 

X's corporate safety account said Wednesday that the SEC's account was not hacked. The post about Bitcoin was merely the result of an employee not having two-factor authentication on accessing the account, the Safety account said.

Cathie Wood sits on stage

Cathie Wood, chief executive officer and chief investment officer, Ark Invest, speaks during the Milken Institute Global Conference on May 2, 2022 in Beverly Hills, California. (PATRICK T. FALLON/AFP via Getty Images / Getty Images)

As investors await the SEC's decision on Bitcoin ETFs, Wood affirmed her position on cryptocurrency as "a public good" and "new asset class." She also called for "democratized access to innovation."

"When we say public good, we're talking about effectively a financial superhighway, and we are not looking to maximize profits on this. We have other funds that are actively managed to serve that purpose. This, we want to make sure we provide access," she explained.

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"The democratization that we set out to provide our clients, democratized access to innovation, both in the public markets, pure-play innovation funds, and now with venture in the private markets. Bitcoin is an extension, democratization, access. We think it is going to be one of the most important assets in history."

FOX Business' Chris Pandolfo, Suzanne O'Halloran, Eleanor Terrett and Charlie Gasparino contributed to this report.

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