August 18, 2022 - The CME as announced it plans to launch options on Ether futures on September 12, pending regulatory review. The CME launched Ether futures in February 2021, and micro-sized Bitcoin and Ether options in March this year.

These new contracts deliver one ether futures, sized at 50 ether per contract, and based on the CME CF Ether-Dollar Reference Rate, which serves as a once-a-day reference rate of the U.S. dollar price of Ether. These new contracts will also expand CME Group's existing suite of Cryptocurrency options contracts, which include Bitcoin options, as well as micro-sized Bitcoin and Ether options.

"The launch of these new options contracts builds on the significant growth and deep liquidity we have seen in our existing Ether futures, which have traded more than 1.8 million contracts to date," said Tim McCourt, Global Head of Equity and FX Products, CME Group. "As we approach the highly anticipated Ethereum Merge next month, we continue to see market participants turn to CME Group to manage ether price risk. Our new Ether options will offer a wide array of clients greater flexibility and added precision to manage their ether exposure ahead of market moving events."

"TP ICAP Digital Assets is excited to support CME Group in the roll out of its full-sized Ether options contract. This larger-sized Ether option, in tandem with the already popular Micro Ether option, has been eagerly awaited by TP ICAP's customers, said Sam Newman, Digital Assets Head of Brokering at TP ICAP. "With the upcoming Ethereum protocol merge, we expect this new contract to see significant interest from both our traditional customers as well as crypto native clients. As part of the world's largest IDB, TP ICAP Digital Assets has supported CME Group's Cryptocurrency suite since our launch in 2019 and will continue to do so as we move into the next phase of institutional adoption."

"Akuna is excited to support the launch of Ether options from CME Group," said Ryan Duckworth, Akuna Capital Head of Trading – U.S. "As the demand for crypto derivatives increases, we look forward to providing liquidity to allow customers to hedge risk and manage exposure to ether."

CME Group's standard- and micro-sized Ether futures contracts have experienced tremendous growth and continue to provide consistent liquidity, volume, and open interest for clients.

Ether futures trading highlights include:

• July average daily volume (ADV) of 7.9K contracts, and open interest (OI) of 3.9K contracts. July OI represented an increase of more than 7% over June.
• Record Q2 ADV of 6.7K contracts and OI of 3.5K contracts. Q2 ADV represented an increase of more than 27% over Q1.

Micro Ether futures trading highlights include:

• July ADV of 25.7K contracts, up more than 41% from June, and OI of 47K contracts, a 43% increase over June.
• Record Q2 ADV of 21.3K contracts, up 12% versus Q1.
• Record OI of 47.8K contracts, representing a more than 34% increase in OI over Q1.

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