The CEO of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME), one of the largest exchanges in the world, recently declared that the platform will not be adding any altcoin futures contracts in the near future and that it will be waiting to see how bitcoin will progress.
Bloomberg reported that Terry Duffy, the chief executive, stated that bitcoin futures contracts “might have been the most controversial launch of a product” he’s encountered in his four decades of trading experience.
“I will not just put products up there to see where they’re going to go. I will take a wait and see approach with Bitcoin for now,” said Duffy during an interview.
The CME first made available bitcoin futures contracts on its platform right after its main competitor, the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), introduced the product. CME’s contracts are five times larger than the ones which are offered at CBOE. According to Bloomberg, the trading volumes for both exchanges have been “relatively modest” since their inauguration.
Still, CME’s bitcoin futures average trading volume increased by 93% over the preceding quarter, with the rate of open interest (OI), the number of open contracts, increasing by 58% to surpass 2,400 this quarter.
The trading volume apparently doesn’t affect Duffy as it seems that he’s staking on bitcoin futures in the long-term.
“We’re not seeing huge flows regardless and that’s OK. This is going to take some time one way or another and we’ll do it the right way,” he said.
CME traded this year an average of 3,063 contracts per day, versus CBOE’s 5,881. Considering the size of the contract, CME is in the lead as its daily average mounts to 15,317 BTC a day, which is twice as much what CBOE trades.
Although Duffy said that he doesn’t want derivatives rookies to get into BTC futures trading due to them being “highly volatile and new,” the CBOE has indicated that it is eager to expand its cryptocurrency futures options, which means that somewhere in the distant future altcoin futures contracts may also be included.
But CME and CBOE aren’t the only exchanges that offer cryptocurrency futures contracts. Crypto Facilities, a UK-based cryptocurrency exchange, launched Litecoin futures earlier this year, while another platform from UK, Coinfloor, introduced physically settled bitcoin futures.
It is worth noting that bitcoin’s value plummeted from an almost $20,000 all-time record when both CME and CBOE began listing BTC futures. Important bitcoin supporter Tom Lee, considers the financial product to be responsible for the market’s “gut-wrenching” drop, as “dramatic price changes” happen when these contracts expire.