The exchange announced Friday that it would begin offering bitcoin futures trading, but it didn't specify a start date. The futures will begin trading at 5 p.m. CT under the ticker symbol "XBT". Not only will it provide professional traders with the ability to short bitcoin for the first time, but it will also open the door to the creation of a Bitcoin ETF and likely entice Wall Street firms to step off the sidelines and engage directly with bitcoin and other digital assets. While CME's announcement sent bitcoin's price hurtling past the $11,000 mark for the second time last week, CBOE's release hasn't had the same effect.
Derivatives marketplace CME Group has announced that it is going to launch Bitcoin futures contract on December 18, 2017. It is now worth more than $11,000. The first bitcoin futures contracts on a regulated US exchange are set to launch on Sunday. Consequently, Cboe will become the first USA exchange to support trading for a cryptocurrency-derived futures product. "We are committed to encouraging fairness and liquidity in bitcoin markets".
The contracts will initially require a margin deposit of 35%, and will be subjected to "hard" price limits of 20% - the contracts won't be able to rise or fall by more than 20% on any given day, the statement said.
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The contracts will be cash-settled, and the price will be based on the daily auction price from Gemini, a cryptocurrency exchange based out of NY. CBOE will derive its bitcoin contract price from the Gemini bitcoin exchange, which is owned by the Winklevoss twins, Cameron and Tyler. Those amounts may become higher in the future.
However, despite the cash-settlement process, some institutional investors have expressed concern at the addition of bitcoin-derived products to CME.