- A filing that appeared on the Delaware Department of State website Monday suggested BlackRock was seeking approval for an XRP ETF.
- BlackRock said the filing was false.
- The Department of State has referred the false filing to the state’s Department of Justice, a spokesperson told DL News.
Prosecutors in Delaware have been asked to investigate Monday’s listing of a fraudulent filing that suggested global asset manager BlackRock was seeking approval for an XRP exchange-traded fund.
The listing and the subsequent highlighting of it by crypto media publication The Block, sent the price of the token — the fifth largest crypto asset by market capitalization — soaring, only for it to collapse within an hour, when BlackRock denied it was seeking approval for an XRP ETF.
The filing was still available on the Delaware Secretary of State’s business database as of 4:00 pm New York time Tuesday, when “ISHARES XRP TRUST” is entered into the “search by entity name” field.
A Delaware Department of State spokesperson declined to say how a fraudulent listing ended up in the database, or describe the filing and confirmation procedure when asked by DL News on Tuesday.
“Our only comment will be that we have referred this matter to the Delaware Department of Justice,” Secretary of State spokesperson Tony Baltazar said.
The Delaware Department of Justice did not immediately return a request for comment.
This isn’t the first time a false report on the Delaware Department of State site has pumped the price of a token.
In 2021, filings suggested Grayscale was seeking approval for ETFs for a pair of obscure crypto tokens. The filings sent the prices of the related tokens soaring, but Grayscale later said they were fake, according to CoinDesk.
Excitement surrounding crypto-based ETFs has reached a fever pitch in the US. ETF approval for spot products would make the digital assets far more accessible to investors of all stripes in the US.
There are now at least 12 pending applications for a Bitcoin spot ETF, and Bloomberg analyst James Seyffart estimates that there’s a 90% chance the SEC approves one by Jan. 10, 2024.
The prospect of one or more of these filings getting approved has sent crypto prices to highs not seen since before the crash of Terra/Luna in the spring of 2022. But JP Morgan analyst Nikolaos Panigirtzoglou said he believes the rally “seems rather overdone.”
“Such ETFs have already existed in Canada and Europe and have gained little interest from investors since their inception,” Panigirtzoglou said in a research note last week.
Aleks Gilbert is DL News’ New York-based DeFi Correspondent. Reach out to him with tips at email@example.com.