According to a press release from the company, the new contract will be cash-settled, based on the CME CF Bitcoin Reference Rate (BRR) which serves as a once-a-day reference rate of the USA dollar price of bitcoin.
Bitcoin prices set a fresh record higher after the Chicago Mercantile Exchange unveiled plans to launch futures on the crypto-currency before the year was out.
This latest indicator of the coming-of-age of cryptocurrency as an asset class follows the start in October of trading in options by LedgerX, which, in its first week of operations, sold bitcoin swaps and options with a notional value of $1 million to institutional buyers.
The digital cash hit a value of over £4,780 ($6,338) on Tuesday afternoon - an increase of nearly 50% since September - with gains of more than 710% since Halloween in 2016.
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CME plans to launch the bitcoin futures in the fourth quarter of this year, subject to regulatory approvals. It could also pave the way for exchange-traded funds.
Laurie Bischel of the CME told FOX Business that the CME is the "natural home" for bitcoin futures, and that it will give bitcoin trading greater transparency, price discovery and better risk management.
CME and United Kingdom -based Crypto Facilities Ltd. have been calculating and publishing the BRR, which aggregates the activity of major bitcoin spot exchanges, since November 2016. Back in September, Jamie Dimon famously called bitcoin a "fraud".
This article is for information and discussion purposes only and does not form a recommendation to invest or otherwise.
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