CBOE Bitcoin Futures Trade Near $18,000; ‘Speculative Mania’ Carries Volume Past 3,400 XBT

As CCN reported, CBOE launched its hotly-anticipated bitcoin futures contracts on Sunday, becoming the first regulated U.S. exchange to provide traders and investors with access to this product. Though volume was much lower than activity on bitcoin exchanges — in part due to the fact that many brokers restricted client access — a CBOE executive noted that its volume was quite respectable when placed in the context of other nascent futures products.

The launch was not without its hiccups. Bitcoin’s rapid price swings flipped CBOE’s “circuit breaker” on several occasions, bringing temporary pauses to trading after reaching certain percentage checkpoints. Additionally, there was so much interest in the futures that the CBOE website crashed, but this outage did not directly affect trading.

Bitcoin Futures Trade Up Post-Launch

Although some bitcoin bears had loudly declared that the creation of futures would cause the bitcoin price to crash, the flagship cryptocurrency traded up during its first day on CBOE.

At the time of writing, GXBT — the index price for the futures contracts — was listed at $16,522, placing it $276 below its daily high. Volume had already surpassed 3,550 XBT, with most of that activity concentrated in XBT/F8, a contract with a January 17 settlement date. The January futures traded as high as $18,850 on Monday morning, but they were priced at $17,710 at the time of writing, representing approximately $1,200 worth of upside from the index’s present value.

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