Cboe plans 10 December bitcoin futures trading launch

Bitcoin futures trading will begin on Cboe Futures Exchange on 10 December.

Cboe Futures Exchange (CFE) will begin offering bitcoin futures trading on 10 December, eight days before rival exchange CME Group will launch its own derivatives of the cryptocurrency.

Trading on CFE will begin at 5.00pm CT, with the first full day of trading scheduled for Monday 11 December.

Cboe’s bitcoin futures - traded under the ticker symbol XBT - will be cash-settled contracts based on digital asset exchange and custodian Gemini’s auction price for bitcoin denominated in US dollars.

The exchange operator explained that XBT futures were specifically deigned to allow for more straightforward trading strategies, through settlement to a single auction price.

“Given the unprecedented interest in bitcoin, it’s vital we provide clients the trading tools to help them express their views and hedge their exposure,” said Ed Tilly, CEO at Cboe Global Markets.

The launch comes just days after CME Group announced that its own launch of bitcoin futures trading will occur on 18 December.

Terry Duffy, CEO at CME Group, said on Friday: “Though we have worked through a lengthy, comprehensive process with the CFTC to get to this point, we recognise bitcoin is a new, uncharted market that will continue to evolve, requiring continued collaboration with the Commission and our clients going forward.”

Over the last five years, the total value of all bitcoin market capitalisation has grown from less than $1 billion to over $183 billion, with daily notional turnover over $10 billion.