As the demand for trading China’s currency builds, the Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Limited (HKEX) today announced plans to introduce additional renminbi (RMB) currency futures during the second quarter already underway, subject to regulatory approval.
The company’s press release explained that some of the planned contracts include cash-settled euro-RMB, Japanese yen-RMB, and Australian dollar-RMB, as well as US dollar-RMB, and described the additions as a tool to give RMB traders ways to hedge their risk in the Chinese offshore RMB currency (CNH).
The news comes on the heels of higher trading volumes, as the existing futures had a record high open interest of 32,009 contracts on February 5th this year, and with daily average volumes during the quarter reaching 3,128 contracts, or more than triple from a year-over-year perspective.
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Li Gang, HKEX’s Co-head of Market Development, commenting in the press release: “We have been pleased by the big surge in our RMB currency futures volume. Our new futures will give the market more tools for trading and risk management.”
HKEX said that US dollar-denominated cash-settled RMB-US dollar futures complement the existing physically delivered US dollar-RMB futures, and provided a list of the new proposed contracts along with their specifications and with pricing based off a WM/Reuters intraday spot rate and TMA CNH fixing for related futures contracts, such as EUR/CNH, JPY/CNH, and AUD/CNH, as well as CNH/USD.
The EUR/CNH contract will have a contract size of 50,000 euros, the JPY/CNH is 6,000,000 yen and the AUD/CNH is 80,000 AUD, and the CNH/USD contract was for 300,000 RMB.
“Cash-settled RMB currency futures are part of our plan to expand our product portfolio across asset classes,” said Romnesh Lamba, HKEX’s Co-Head of Market Development, commenting in the official press release.
“These new products help extend and deepen our value proposition as RMB is used more widely around the world.” An excerpt from the press release below shows a chart with related volumes surging during the first quarter of 2016 at HKEX.