Wednesday, 18 September, 2019

NYSE owner to offer futures that pay out with Bitcoin next month

Bakkt Can (Finally) Launch Bitcoin Futures, One Year After First Announcement Bitcoin Price Surges 10% in 48 Hours as Bakkt Countdown Begins
Russell Knight | 18 August, 2019, 02:58

"This now enables us to offer institutional-grade custody via the Bakkt Warehouse alongside the federally regulated Bakkttm Bitcoin Futures contracts". Unlike other futures exchanges, this is settled in bitcoin.

Now, the New York State Department of Financial Services (DFS) has also given the go-ahead for Bakkt to start the Bakkt Trust Company, which will physically hold bitcoin for futures-based trading, according to a press release.

Bakkt Bitcoin futures contracts won't rely on unregulated spot markets for settlement prices, thus serving as a transparent price discovery mechanism for the benchmark price for Bitcoin, the company said in a statement.

After a series of delays in 2018 and early 2019, Bakkt has finally announced the launching date of its product.

When the platform was first unveiled 12 months ago, ICE eyed a December 2018 launch date as it meant to have the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) approve its proposed contracts.

The futures contracts will be exchange-traded on ICE Futures while ICE Clear US would clear them.

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The impending launch of Bakkt's trading platform could serve as a fundamental catalyst for positive sentiment among cryptocurrency investors because it will provide institutional traders with the ability to trade bitcoin on an exchange with strong ties to the legacy financial industry. "In addition, the independent governance and compliance requirements of a qualified custodian mean that the Bakkt Warehouse is created to meet the highest standards of oversight", the announcement read.

"We're starting with the introduction of a regulated and secure qualified custodian for Bitcoin to support our futures contracts".

The move would specifically comfort investors who wanted to speculate on bitcoin but delayed their plans owing to higher risks, lack of compliance, and market surveillance associated with global cryptocurrency exchanges. This is the first virtual currency trust company application approved under Superintendent Lacewell.

Bakkt begun testing the solution on a widespread solution on July 22. So it's now unclear whether the product will go live with any operator and Bakkt has yet to confirm in the few weeks leading up to launch date if it hits a snag with the CFTC.

The first two contracts to be listed by ICE Futures U.S. are "Bakkt Bitcoin (USD) Daily Futures" and "Bitcoin (USD) Monthly Futures".

Also, coming off the back of recent comments by Coinbase CEO, Brian Armstrong that institutions are already investing $200-$400M weekly in crypto makes it even more bullish for the leading cryptocurrency to record new gains.

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