A British cryptocurrency exchange is planning to enter the bitcoin futures market.
CoinfloorEX, a London-based exchange founded in 2013, announced Wednesday that it would launch bitcoin futures contracts next month, joining a number of other companies to offer such product to their customers, according to Reuters.
Notably, unlike some of its competitors, Coinfloor will offer physically settled futures contracts, the wire service reported, meaning when the contract is set to expire, the actual asset being traded will be delivered (in this case, bitcoin). The bitcoin futures contracts offered by CME and Cboe are cash settled, and do not deliver bitcoin to the contract’s owners.
The product came in response in part because of demand from some of the exchange’s customers, Coinfloor co-founder Mark Lamb told Reuters. He explained:
“When you talk to the liquidity providers, they all say the same thing, which is they want a physically delivered futures contract so they can hedge their exposure across exchanges.”
Stepping back, Coinfloor is at least the fifth company to offer bitcoin futures contracts, joining Bitmex, CryptoFacilities, CME Group and the CBOE. The U.S.-based CME and Cboe offer cash-settled contracts, as does the UK-based CryptoFacilities.
The concept of bitcoin futures is still controversial, with the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission announcing it would work on a “heightened review process” for any further futures contracts after receiving pushback on the existing products.
Similarly, several senators requested further information about the CFTC’s oversight of such products, noting that taxpayers should be protected from “fraud, manipulation and abusive practices in the futures and options markets.”
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