One of the largest derivatives exchanges in the world, the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) Group, is planning to launch options trading for its micro BTC and ETH futures, the company said in a press release on 1 March.
According to the announcement, the new micro BTC and micro ETH options contracts will be one-tenth of the size of the respective tokens, and are expected to start trading on 28 March, following a regulatory review. CME noted that Genesis Global Trading, Cumberland, and Akuna Capital will be providing liquidity for its new crypto investment vehicle. The head of relationship management at DRW, Rob Strebel, said in a statement:
“In working with our institutional counterparties, we know there is strong demand for safe, regulated exposure to cryptoassets. This innovation from CME Group provides welcomed flexibility in the listed options space, and we expect these products will help attract new investors and grow the crypto ecosystem.”
Although CME’s micro futures contracts are less than a year old — with micro ETH launching in December 2021, and micro BTC in May 2021 — around 5.2 million combined micro futures contracts have already changed hands. The addition of micro-sized options will further enable traders of all sizes to hedge market-moving events with “greater precision and flexibility”.
The new micro BTC and ETH options will allow a wide range of market participants — from institutions to individual traders — to manage their exposure to the underlying assets. The options will also allow CME clients to express long and short-term views on the markets, with a choice of monthly, or weekly options expiries.