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Bakkt to begin bitcoin futures testing on July 22

Fri, 14 Jun 2019, 04:46 am UTC

Crypto futures exchange Bakkt has officially announced the date when it will begin testing its first product, physically-delivered bitcoin (BTC) futures.

Following months of delay caused by regulatory issues, Bakkt COO Adam White, who joined from cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase, announced on Thursday that the testing will commence on July 22.

In an online post, White said:

“On July 22, two days after Apollo 11’s 50th anniversary, Bakkt will initiate user acceptance testing for its bitcoin futures listed and traded at ICE Futures U.S. and cleared at ICE Clear US.”

According to the ICE Futures U.S. filing with the CFTC, Bakkt will be listing two futures contracts – a daily settlement bitcoin future allowing customers to transact in a same-day market, and a monthly bitcoin futures contract that will enable trading in the front month and across the forward pricing curve.

“The contracts will be physically settled, such that the selling Clearing Member would be required at settlement to deliver to the buying Clearing Member a specified quantity of Bitcoin,” the document states.

CoinDesk reported that both daily and monthly contracts will see a minimum price fluctuation of $2.50 per bitcoin. Block Trades may be executed at $0.01 per bitcoin ($0.01 per contract), with a listing cycle that can last up to 12 consecutive contract months (for the monthly contract) or 70 consecutive eligible contract dates (for the daily contract).

Final settlement of both contracts will be done at the Bakkt warehouse.

In a previous announcement, White revealed that they have filed with the New York State Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) to become a trust company and serve as a Qualified Custodian for digital assets. Last month, Bakkt CEO Kelly Loeffler said that the work on that front was ongoing and will enable custody for delivery of bitcoin futures.

Meanwhile, the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) will no longer offer bitcoin futures contracts after the final contracts expire this month, Cointelegraph reported. In an announcement made in March, it said:

“CFE is not adding a Cboe Bitcoin (USD) (“XBT”) futures contract for trading in March 2019. CFE is assessing its approach with respect to how it plans to continue to offer digital asset derivatives for trading. While it considers its next steps, CFE does not currently intend to list additional XBT futures contracts for trading. Currently listed XBT futures contracts remain available for trading.”

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