ErisX Introduces Block Trading for Crypto Spot and Futures Products

Block trades are prevalent in derivative markets where investors seek to execute big transactions out of the public eye.

Chicago-based crypto exchange ErisX has launched its OTC Block Trading venue, which allows the execution of live block transactions on a large variety of listed spot and futures products. The initiative is part of a broader effort to create a professional market for crypto derivatives.

The new capabilities offer deeper liquidity and multi-custodian solution to institutions and high net-worth individuals needing to fill large orders over a REST-based API. Contracts can be entered into bilaterally and then settled and cleared at the exchange’s clearinghouse, Eris Clearing.

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Registered users are also able to submit off-exchange, privately negotiated trades through the Eris trading interface with requirements for these block trades, including minimum size, pricing, and submission time are set forth in the exchange rules for futures and spot products.

“We are pleased to be introducing our block trading capabilities through the REST based API. We are removing the friction and risks associated with OTC based workflows and expanding the universe of potential counterparties for our Members with a competitively priced service,” said Thomas Chippas, CEO of ErisX.

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Closer to the mainstream

Seeking to drive the market closer to the mainstream, Coinbase, Japanese financial holdings company Nomura and most recently SIX Group, the owner of SIX Swiss Exchange, have all launched similar services for institutional investors. Block trades are prevalent in traditional derivative markets where professional investors seek to execute big-volume transactions out of the public eye.

The move comes barely two weeks after ErisX has launched its own physically-settled Ether futures contracts, meaning investors receive real cryptocurrency and not the cash equivalent.

ErisX, which is backed by US brokerage TD Ameritrade, has been granted two different regulatory designations, a derivatives clearing license and a designated contract market (DCM) license.

The three-year startup has also made its products available via US brokers licensed as futures commission merchants (FCMs). It has recently onboarded TradeStation Crypto to expand the breadth of accessible liquidity available to the latter’s customers.

“By introducing block trading capabilities under a CFTC-regulated entity, they eliminate counterparty settlement risk while limiting market impact. This is another example of ErisX bringing familiarity and security to the cryptocurrency markets,” said Carlos Mosquera Benatuil, CEO of Solidus OTC.

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