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Cash-Settled Futures Launched by Bakkt Records a Volume of 1250 BTC, 17x More Than its Futures Debut in September

The much-awaited Bitcoin cash-settled monthly futures from Bakkt launched on Dec. 9, recording a volume of 1250 BTC. This is a sharp contrast to the 72 BTC Bakkt saw traded on its futures debut earlier in September, which means that the company could be taking over a significant part of the market.

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The disappointing launch volumes of its futures contracts didn’t stop Bakkt from taking over the crypto market. With its Bitcoin futures volume up more than 6,200 percent since launch, the ICE subsidiary announced the launch of two new markets—Bitcoin options and Bitcoin cash-settled monthly futures.

Announced earlier in November, the cash-settled BTC futures seemed to clash with the company’s founding strategy, which was to separate itself from its cash-settled competitors. Nonetheless, the company went on with the launch and the cash-settled monthly BTC futures launched on Dec. 9.

According to Bakkt’s official announcement, the new cash-settled futures contracts will be available on ICE Futures Singapore. The regulated exchange will allow customers in Asia and abroad to gain or hedge exposure to bitcoin safely and efficiently. Contracts will leverage the settlement price of the physically-settled Bakkt monthly futures, the company said.

Bakkt’s Bitcoin options are the first CFTC regulated option on futures contracts for bitcoin. The contracts will also be based on Bakkt’s bitcoin monthly futures and settle into the underlying futures contract two days before they expire.

Bakkt breaks the jinx of its first launch

Bakkt COO Adam White said “These new contracts represent an important milestone in the development of this emerging asset class and our bitcoin product complex.”

White’s statement is in line with the company’s aggressive market takeover, which seems focused on out-muscling the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) group. Last month, White announced that the New York-based company had opened up its custody solution to any institutions looking to store Bitcoin.

According to Bakkt’s official website, the cash-settled monthly futures saw a volume of 1250 BTC at 2:30 pm GMT. With a few more hours left before trading closes, the launch day volumes already look promising.

Just last week, Bakkt’s CEO, Kelly Loeffler became a senator in the state of Georgia, according to CBS News, a source familiar with the plan confirmed the news, saying the decision would become effective on Jan. 1, 2020. While it’s still unclear who would succeed Loeffler as the head of Bakkt, her stint in the U.S. Senate could prove to be invaluable to the crypto industry.

In October, Bakkt rolled out a liquidity incentive program, which is awaiting approval from the CFTC. It could further fuel the growth of the new market. The Intercontinental Exchange-backed venture is also looking to roll-out an options market tied to bitcoin.

Bakkt announced that with 4,443 BTC contracts traded, in one day in November, it was its biggest day yet, posting a 60 percent increase in trade volume from Friday, the contract’s previous all-time-high in terms of the number of contracts traded in a single day.

Analysts say that if Bakkt can keep up its current momentum and average 4,000 contracts per day, the platform will be trading roughly 16 percent of CME’s average daily volume in November (CME’s November average of 4,768 contracts puts its daily average at 23,840 BTC, with each CME contract representing 5 BTC).


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