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CME readies round-the-clock grains trade
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CME readies round-the-clock grains trade

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CME readies round-the-clock grains trade

CHICAGO (Reuters) - CME Group Inc will extend trading hours for its hallmark grain contracts, two sources close to the matter said on Monday, as the Chicago exchange moves to defend its turf against rival ICE's bid for nearly round-the-clock transactions.

The board of the CME, which has a stranglehold on grains trading through the Chicago Board of Trade, the world's largest grain exchange that it acquired in 2007, has agreed to extend trading hours, but has not decided on how many hours to add to its trading day or when to implement them, the sources said.

Chicago traders had earlier cited widespread talk that the CME was planning to extend the trading day to 22 hours, matching the trading period unveiled several weeks ago by the Atlanta-based IntercontinentalExchange as it announced plans to launch look-alike grains contracts.

Currently CME grains trade a 13-hour stretch overnight and nearly four hours during the day.

The shift to a nearly continuous cycle would be the latest step-change for the tradition-bound Chicago institution, which has struggled to balance demands from new hedge funds and institutional investors against the floor traders, farmers and other smaller dealers who have been wary of change.

"I don't think this is about either exchange caring about how long peoples' trading days are. This is about competition and holding market share and maximizing return to shareholders," said Rich Feltes, vice president for research with futures merchant R.J. O'Brien.

Traders cited a widespread rumor that the CME was planning for grains to be traded from 6 p.m. CDT (2300 GMT) to 4 p.m. CDT (2100 GMT) -- allowing for the exchange to be open during times when price-sensitive data is released from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

The Chicago Board of Trade has been the unchallenged global benchmark for grains prices from Paris to Sydney to Singapore, extending its trading hours in the past to allow traders in Asia and Europe to participate and expand its business.

But ICE is now encroaching, offering contracts that will trade from 8 p.m. to 6 p.m. Eastern Time (2400-2200 GMT).

"The board has approved to extend trading hours," one source said. The sources said a plan by ICE to launch look-alike corn, wheat and soybean contracts was a key reason behind the move.

Asked to comment on the apparent board decision, a CME spokesman referred to an earlier comment: "At CME Group, we regularly engage with industry participants to discuss ways to enhance our markets. We will keep our customers and industry participants abreast of any planned changes, but have nothing formal to announce at this time".

LARGE SPECULATORS COULD BENEFIT

Expanded trading hours could give an extra advantage to large, speculative traders who have instant access to USDA data and the available capital to immediately trade on it, said Alan Brugler, president of Brugler Marketing & Management.

Until now, almost all major U.S. agricultural data -- including weekly crop progress reports issued on Monday afternoon, weekly export sales numbers on Thursday morning, and monthly supply-demand reports -- have been released outside of current CBOT trading hours.

An analyst, who declined to be named, said the CME had not intended to expand its trading hours -- until the ICE challenge -- because there was not demand from customers. "The commercial crowd has never really been in favor of that because they would have to put on extra coverage in case something happens.

'I WISH THE MARKET WAS OPEN NOW'

"Also, how many afternoons have we seen any market-moving news that had people saying 'I wish the market was open now'," the analyst said, adding that monthly USDA livestock reports hardly ever affect the grains markets.

CBOT grain futures currently trade electronically on the exchange's Globex platform from 6 p.m. to 7:15 a.m. Central time, while side-by-side trade on Globex and the open-outcry pits runs from 9:30 a.m. to 1:15 p.m.

CME Group last widened its trading hours in grains in 2009, expanding the early Globex session to 7:15 a.m., from 6 a.m. previously. The CME's New York Mercantile Exchange (NYMEX) already trades nearly around-the-clock.

Grain analysts said the launch of the ICE contracts would pressure CME to either match its trading hours, or risk losing business when market-moving news occurs outside of CME's trading schedule.

The weekly U.S. crop progress updates, which are released at 3 p.m. Central time on Mondays between April and November, can often impact the grain markets when CME electronic trade resumes three hours later.

"Especially when we get into (crop) ratings and we are hanging on every percentage change in the ratings on a weekly basis -- I question whether the CME is going to remain closed and let ICE drain off all that volume," said Feltes.


Exclusive: CME readies round-the-clock grains trade: sources - Yahoo! Finance

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22 Hour Grains


Wow: round-the-clock grains....that Sunday night open might be exciting.

I'm remembering my days of trading wheat/corn on my QuoTrek back in the 90's.....

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It's about time. Being closed 8:15 am ET to 10:30 am ET was dumb.

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Globex Grains

It's official -- begin round-the-clock grain trading on Mother's Day....

"Beginning, May 13 for trade date May 14, customers will have expanded access to CBOT corn, soybeans, wheat, soybean meal and soybean oil futures and options on CME Globex as follows:
Sunday to Monday, 5:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. CT
Monday to Friday, 6:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. CT."

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CME Group Adds Ethanol to Expanded CBOT Grain and Oilseed Trading Hours on CME Globex

CME Group Adds Ethanol to Expanded CBOT Grain and Oilseed Trading Hours on CME Globex
CHICAGO, May 3, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- CME Group, the world's leading and most diverse derivatives marketplace, today announced it will expand electronic trading hours for its CBOT Denatured Fuel Ethanol futures and options on CME Globex in line with recently announced plans to expand CBOT grain and oilseed trading hours.

Pending CFTC certification, CME Group customers will have expanded market access to a variety of CBOT futures and options on CME Globex 22 hours per day.

Effective May 20, 2012, for trade date May 21, 2012, electronic trading hours for CBOT Corn, Mini-Sized Corn, Soybeans, Mini-Sized Soybeans, Wheat, Mini-Sized Wheat, Soybean Meal, Soybean Oil, Rough Rice, Oats, and Ethanol futures and options plus all related calendar spread options and inter-commodity spread options will be extended to:

Sunday to Monday, 5:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. CT
Monday to Friday, 6:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. CT.

Daily settlements will continue to be based on market activity at or around 1:15 p.m. CT each day. Additionally, open-outcry trading hours will continue to operate from 9:30 a.m. to 1:15 p.m. CT Monday to Friday.

This supersedes CME Group news release 12-55 issued on May 1, 2012.

As the world's leading and most diverse derivatives marketplace, CME Group (CME Group - Futures & Options Trading for Risk Management) is where the world comes to manage risk. CME Group exchanges offer the widest range of global benchmark products across all major asset classes, including futures and options based on interest rates, equity indexes, foreign exchange, energy, agricultural commodities, metals, weather and real estate.

CME Group brings buyers and sellers together through its CME Globex® electronic trading platform and its trading facilities in New York and Chicago. CME Group also operates CME Clearing, one of the world's leading central counterparty clearing providers, which offers clearing and settlement services for exchange-traded contracts, as well as for over-the-counter derivatives transactions through CME ClearPort®. These products and services ensure that businesses everywhere can substantially mitigate counterparty credit risk in both listed and over-the-counter derivatives markets.


CME Group Adds Ethanol to Expanded CBOT Grain and Oilseed Trading Hours on CME Globex - May 3, 2012

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