CME Micro Bitcoin futures surpass 1 million contracts as institutional speculation rises

Institutional exposure to cryptocurrencies via derivatives continued to grow in the second quarter, as CME Group’s newly launched Bitcoin (BTC) micro contract received considerable uptick in its first two months of trading.

Since launching on May 3, CME’s Micro Bitcoin futures contract has already surpassed 1 million contracts traded, the Chicago-based derivatives market announced earlier this week. CME executive Tim McCourt said the new product has been popular among institutions and day traders seeking to hedge their spot Bitcoin price risk.

Denominated at 0.1 BTC, the micro contract is one-tenth the size of one Bitcoin. By comparison, CME’s main Bitcoin futures contract unit is 5 BTC.

“We’ve seen more institutional volume than we anticipated, which shows that the timing was right for a smaller bitcoin contract,” said Brooks Dudley, the global head of digital assets at ED&F Man Capital Markets.

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