CBOE bitcoin futures contracts surged as much as 26 percent on their U.S. debut on Sunday.
Never has a new product launch at CBOE exceeded the level of interest and anticipation around bitcoin futures, CEO Ed Tilly said.
“It’s just been so exciting for us to bring this to market. I told the team last night, I said, ‘let’s do this every Sunday! This is a ton of fun.’”
According to Tilly, the Chicago-based derivatives exchange plans to wait until there have been a couple of settlements on the one-month bitcoin futures contracts before it moves forward with any new cryptocurrency products. Options on futures contracts and exchange-traded funds are some of the mapped out products.
“We will be building confidence in the coming months, and stay tuned, there are more to come,” Tilly said, adding that futures on other cryptocurrencies will follow.
“I do see other currencies going forward.”
The one-month CBOE bitcoin futures contract proved to be the most active one in Sunday’s trading session. Most activity was concentrated in the front-month contract for January, XBTF8. The contract opened at 6 p.m. local time on Sunday at $15,460, roughly 9% premium over BTC’s spot price of $16,900 at the time. By late afternoon on Monday in New York, the one-month contract had changed hands over 3,950 times, trading at $18,650.
“We saw pretty volatile overnight markets, a lot of price moves, but everything worked as it should,” Tilly said.
According to CBOE data, nearly 20 trading firms participated in Sunday’s session.
“Just about all of the participants who had shown us readiness late last week and even into this weekend, showed up,” Tilly said.
Volatile trading on Sunday triggered two temporary trading halts designed to calm the market. CBOE’s website suffered temporary delays and outages due to heavy traffic, six times bigger than the platform sees on an average weekday. However, the issues did not affect the trading systems, CBOE said.
“Markets came back in line and we reopened in an orderly fashion,” said Tilly. “We could not have been more pleased with the way that played out last night.”
Fellow Chicago-based exchange CME Group will be launching its bitcoin futures contracts on December 17. Nasdaq has also lined up bitcoin futures for next year, as early as 2Q.