ICE Beats 3-Year Record as Futures and Options Trading Hit New High

Wednesday, 15/03/2023 | 16:01 GMT by Solomon Oladipupo
  • The new record includes ICE’s financials futures and options portfolio.
  • Contracts based on EURIBOR and SONIA reached new peaks.
Intercontinental Exchange (ICE)

Trading activities in futures and options on the Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) reached a new high on Monday, March 13, as 14.45 million contracts were traded. The volume surpassed the previous peak record set three years ago on March 12, 2020, at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.

ICE, which operates futures and cash exchanges and central clearing houses, disclosed the milestone in a statement released on Wednesday. “Volume records set on March 13, 2023, included ICE’s financials futures and options portfolio, with a record 10 million contracts traded, the highest level since May 29, 2018,” the exchange operator added.

Speaking about the new records, Chris Rhodes, the President of ICE Futures Europe, noted that the increase reflects the increasing use of futures as a risk management tool.

“The record level of trading activity which took place on ICE’s markets on March 13 reflects a sudden change in risk sentiment in U.S. regional bank stocks, which collided with interest rate expectations that were priced for central bank tightening,” said Chris Rhodes, President of ICE Futures Europe. “These volumes reflect a flight to liquidity, demonstrating the reliability of futures markets as a risk management tool,” Rhodes added.

Derivatives Trading on Rates Reach New Highs

Giving further details on the records, ICE disclosed that futures and options trading based on the Euro Interbank Offer Rate (EURIBOR) peaked at a record 5.49 million contracts during the day. This beats the previous record set on May 29, 2018. Euribor is a reference rate that measures the average interest rate at which banks in the eurozone are willing to lend to each other on a short-term basis.

On the other hand, trading activities based on the Sterling Overnight Index Average (SONIA) surged to a record 1.17 million futures and options contracts. SONIA is the average rate banks in the British sterling market are willing to provide overnight lending to other banks that are in need of funding.

“For comparison, average daily volume (ADV) year to date in ICE’s financial futures and options portfolio is 3 million contracts while ADV in Euribor is 1.8 million contracts,” ICE noted.

Trading activities in futures and options on the Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) reached a new high on Monday, March 13, as 14.45 million contracts were traded. The volume surpassed the previous peak record set three years ago on March 12, 2020, at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.

ICE, which operates futures and cash exchanges and central clearing houses, disclosed the milestone in a statement released on Wednesday. “Volume records set on March 13, 2023, included ICE’s financials futures and options portfolio, with a record 10 million contracts traded, the highest level since May 29, 2018,” the exchange operator added.

Speaking about the new records, Chris Rhodes, the President of ICE Futures Europe, noted that the increase reflects the increasing use of futures as a risk management tool.

“The record level of trading activity which took place on ICE’s markets on March 13 reflects a sudden change in risk sentiment in U.S. regional bank stocks, which collided with interest rate expectations that were priced for central bank tightening,” said Chris Rhodes, President of ICE Futures Europe. “These volumes reflect a flight to liquidity, demonstrating the reliability of futures markets as a risk management tool,” Rhodes added.

Derivatives Trading on Rates Reach New Highs

Giving further details on the records, ICE disclosed that futures and options trading based on the Euro Interbank Offer Rate (EURIBOR) peaked at a record 5.49 million contracts during the day. This beats the previous record set on May 29, 2018. Euribor is a reference rate that measures the average interest rate at which banks in the eurozone are willing to lend to each other on a short-term basis.

On the other hand, trading activities based on the Sterling Overnight Index Average (SONIA) surged to a record 1.17 million futures and options contracts. SONIA is the average rate banks in the British sterling market are willing to provide overnight lending to other banks that are in need of funding.

“For comparison, average daily volume (ADV) year to date in ICE’s financial futures and options portfolio is 3 million contracts while ADV in Euribor is 1.8 million contracts,” ICE noted.

About the Author: Solomon Oladipupo
Solomon Oladipupo
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About the Author: Solomon Oladipupo
Solomon Oladipupo is a journalist and editor from Nigeria that covers the tech, FX, fintech and cryptocurrency industries. He is a former assistant editor at AgroNigeria Magazine where he covered the agribusiness industry. Solomon holds a first-class degree in Journalism & Mass Communication from the University of Lagos where he graduated top of his class.
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