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CME stands ground after Eurodollar options protest
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CME stands ground after Eurodollar options protest

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CME stands ground after Eurodollar options protest

* CME executives meet with Eurodollar options traders
* Independent traders boycotted open outcry pit on Friday
* No changes made to rules on "block trades"

By Tom Polansek
CHICAGO, April 16 (Reuters) - CME Group is standing its ground on large, privately negotiated trades in the active Eurodollar options market after meeting on Monday with traders who protested against its rules, traders said.

CME executives, including the next CEO Phupinder Gill, met with floor traders who boycotted the options on Eurodollar futures pit on Friday morning, said David Stein, a trader who attended the meeting.
CME declined to comment on the meeting.

"The exchange is not interested in changing anything," Stein said.

Independent traders, known as locals, stood outside the pit on Friday to protest a string of recent "block trades," including one on Thursday that could have been the largest in history.

Block trades are large, privately negotiated transactions that are struck away from the broader market by phone or otherwise and cleared by the exchange. They must exceed exchange-set size limits and are reported publicly minutes after completion.

The delay in reporting puts floor traders at a disadvantage, according to locals, who said they were not able to participate in the recent block trades. They have said the transactions can be completed more efficiently and equitably in the open outcry pit, and customers can get better pricing there.

CME says block trades provide the "convenience of privately negotiating a trade with a selected eligible counterparty" and the "ability to execute a large transaction at a fair and reasonable single price."

Firms that execute block trades are influential in the market because they could take their business away from CME, potentially to over-the-counter markets, Stein said.

He said local traders did not yet know what their next move will be.

CME stands ground after Eurodollar options protest | Reuters

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