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CME Group to launch Micro-Sized Bitcoin and Ether Options

By Edlyn Cardoza

March 02, 2022

  • Bitcoin
  • CME Group
  • Derivatives Marketplace
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CME Group, Derivatives Marketplace, Micro Bitcoin, Micro Ether, Liquidity, Micro Bitcoin, Micro Ether, Bitcoin, USAThe world’s leading derivatives marketplace, CME Group, recently announced its plans to launch Micro Bitcoin and Micro Ether futures options on March 28, pending regulatory review.

The new Micro Bitcoin and Micro Ether options contracts will be one-tenth of their respective underlying tokens in size. They will offer a wide range of market participants – from institutions to sophisticated, active, individual traders – more ways to manage their exposure to the top two cryptocurrencies by market capitalization. These contracts will complement the existing Bitcoin options contracts, sized at five bitcoin, and launched in 2020. Additionally, they will allow clients to express long- or short-term views with a choice of monthly and Monday, Wednesday, and Friday weekly options expiries.

“We have worked closely with clients and the broader industry to establish robust and liquid cryptocurrency futures and options markets at CME Group,” said Tim McCourt, Global Head of Equity and FX Products, CME Group. “At less than a year old, nearly 5.2 million combined Micro Bitcoin and Micro Ether futures contracts have changed hands. Building on the strength and liquidity of the underlying contracts, our micro-sized options will enable traders of all sizes to efficiently hedge market-moving events with greater precision and flexibility or fine-tune their cryptocurrency market exposure.”

“Micro options provide the targeted risk exposure that investors are looking for,” said Joshua Lim, Head of Derivatives at Genesis Global Trading. “We are excited to offer liquidity on the broad and growing family of CME Group cryptocurrency products.

“Cumberland is excited to provide liquidity from day one in CME Group’s new Micro Bitcoin and Micro Ether options contracts, complementing our existing offering in the crypto spot and derivatives market,” said Rob Strebel, Head of Relationship Management, DRW. “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.”

“Akuna Capital is looking forward to providing liquidity to CME Group options on Micro Bitcoin and Micro Ether futures contracts,” said John Harris, CEO of Akuna Digital Assets. “We believe that options on these contracts will allow existing market participants greater flexibility when seeking cost-efficient exposure as well as opening the market to new participants who prefer the more granular sizing.”

Recently, IBS Intelligence reported that CME Group had announced its plans to launch two new reference rates for bitcoin and ether on February 28 – the CME CF Bitcoin Reference Rate New York (BRRNY) and CME CF Ether-Dollar Reference Rate New York (ETHUSD_NY) – which will provide a once-a-day reference rate of the US dollar price of the two digital assets, published at 4 p.m. New York time.

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