CBOE Futures Exchange To Cease Trading Bitcoin Futures Contracts

Daniel Fowler
March 18, 2019

Cboe Global Markets Inc., the first mainstream exchange to let people buy and sell Bitcoin futures, said in a web posting that it's reviewing its approach to cryptocurrency derivatives and doesn't now plan to list more contracts. "While it considers its next steps, CFE does not now intend to list additional XBT futures contracts for trading", - the company explained. CFE is assessing its approach with respect to how it plans to continue to offer digital asset derivatives for trading. "While it considers its next steps, CFE does not now intend to list additional XBT futures contracts for trading", CBOE noted. It's not just daily one off volume that's trending up either, as 1Q19 volumes through February are running at a 40% Y/Y clip, and is on track to be the highest CME bitcoin futures volume quarter since the product launched at the end of 2017. The exchange also said that it is reviewing its vision on cryptocurrency derivatives trading.

The CBOE clarified this news in a statement released on March 14th.

Given the elasticity of Bitcoin's price to the actions of the CBOE, the top cryptocurrency was not affected by this delisting.

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Several different sources point to different reasons as to why CBOE is discontinuing its bitcoin futures offering to traders. We are committed to encouraging fairness and liquidity in the bitcoin market. The product from CBOE consistently generated less than half the volume that competitor CME Group's Bitcoin futures generated. This suggests that regardless of volatility, the range-bound action may continue in immediate and near future for both Bitcoin and other major legacy cryptocurrencies.

Last Wednesday was the latest round of CBOE XBT (XBTH19) futures expired.

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