This week, the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) as well as the CME Group, provided clarity regarding their soon-to-be released Bitcoin futures contracts. This comes after CME announced that its futures contracts could go live as early as December 2018.
CBOE Bitcoin Futures (XBT)
This week, CBOE announced additional details regarding its Bitcoin futures investment options, as well as more specific contract details.
CBOE will list its Bitcoin futures under the symbol “XBT”; these contracts will base their value on the bitcoin price pulled from the Gemini exchange. The trading hours for an expiring XBT futures contract will end at 2:45 PM on the final settlement date, and the minimum spread per trade will be around 10 points, or $10 USD.
In regards to the type of Bitcoin futures that will be available for trade, there will be weekly contracts, serial contracts, and quarterly contracts.
At press time, the official listing date is “TBD subject to regulatory review,” but it looks like the contracts may be available at the end of December, or in early 2018.
CME Bitcoin Offering
Although initially reported by CME that its Bitcoin futures contracts would be available on December 11th, it looks like the public will have to wait a little longer, as CME has not filed with the U.S Commodity Futures Trading Commission. However, the firm remains in active discussion with the regulatory agency.
CME’s Bitcoin futures offering will be cash-settled and based on the CME CF Bitcoin Reference Rate (BRR) which compares the rate of the U.S dollar to the price of Bitcoin.
To help manage some of the volatility, CME will not allow the trading of Bitcoin futures at prices 20 percent above or below the settlement price for the previous day.
As Bitcoin is volatile in nature, this should provide more opportunity for institutionalized investors to invest in what they believe the future of Bitcoin’s price holds.
Despite the delay, CME still hopes to launch its Bitcoin futures by the end of the year — assuming they receive full approval from CFTC regulators.
When do you think the first Bitcoin futures contract will be available and do you believe that is good for the long-term growth of Bitcoin? Let us know what you think.
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