The Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) announced Monday that it will begin to offer Bitcoin futures trading options to its customers on Sunday evening. The CBOE announcement said that futures trading will launch at 5:00 p.m. CT on December 10 to coincide with the start of Global Trading Hours, with the following day marking the first full day of trading.
According to CBOE Global Markets' Chief Executive Officer Ed Tilly, the launch is the culmination of roughly six months of preparation with the CFTC. During an appearance on CNBC’s Power Lunch, Tilly suggested that the creation of a transparent market with appropriate oversight could have a “dampening effect on the volatility we’ve seen over the last couple days in Bitcoin.”
The CBOE will provide those Bitcoin futures under the trading ticker symbol XBT. In its press release, CBOE described the offerings as “cash-settled contracts based on Gemini’s auction price for bitcoin, denominated in U.S. dollars.”
As an added incentive, CBOE will initially provide trading at no cost. As Tilly noted in the announcement:
“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. We are committed to encouraging fairness and liquidity in the bitcoin market. To promote this, we will initially offer XBT futures trading for free.”
Meanwhile, CME intends to launch its own trading for Bitcoin Futures on December 18, and Nasdaq has indicated that it will offer similar trading options sometime in 2018.