CME Futures Performance Underlines a Growing Bitcoin Futures Market Author: Jimmy Aki Last Updated: 14 January 2020 There has been some considerable action across the Bitcoin futures marketplace over the past few days, as anticipation over the launch of several new products seems to be driving activity from investors. Late last week, the Chicago Mercantile Exchange Group announced via Twitter that it had witnessed a 69 percent increase over the end of last year. As the tweet explained, the open interest (a measure which indicated the level of market activity for an underlying asset) recorded last week was second only to the peak recorded at the end of June- when Bitcoin was still coasting off its last major bull run. Bitcoin futures open interest (OI) started the first four trading days with 5.4K contracts on January 7, up 69% from year-end OI. https://t.co/rkPfdlSyeB pic.twitter.com/Dnm1h4Jrcu — CMEGroup (@CMEGroup) January 9, 2020 Strong Performances Across the Board However, it is widely speculated that the driver of this particular interest has been the imminent launch of options on the CME futures contracts. The data for the launch has already been published on the CME website, and as company officials have claimed, the options are set to launch today, barring any pushback from regulators. If it does launch, the CME options will be the second options program to launch in just as many days. FTX, another crypto derivatives exchange, rolled out its own options trading on Saturday, and claimed on the same day that it had already logged $1 million in trading volumes in just 2 hours. However, CME isn’t the only company that has recorded promising numbers on its futures contracts. Intercontinental Exchange’s Bakkt has been on a roll recently, with its all-time high daily trading volumes hitting 6,601 in December for its physically-delivered contracts. Interesting Times for Bitcoin Investors The high numbers are coming at a time when the desire for futures contracts seems to be surging as well. News source Finance Magnates reported earlier today that there is a surging demand for futures, quoting a piece of data published by Bitcoin.com. If anything, the increase in demand for them is at least soothing for investors who have stuck with the asset class all this while. These investors can now look to 2020 as the year that they get the biggest dividends on their investments yet, especially given that the halving- which is expected to occur in May- is widely anticipated to cause a massive upsurge in the price of Bitcoin. Also, investors who have long avoided the crypto space can finally have a reason to join in. Traditional stocks are stalling after a mixed 2019, and for those looking to diversify their portfolios, there has never been a better time to get into crypto.