At the parent site, we recently published a review of Emily Lambert’s book “The Futures”, which traces the colourful history of Chicago’s futures exchanges. The city’s two main trading venues, The Chicago Mercantile Exchange and the Chicago Board of Trade, merged in 2007 to create the CME Group. Yesterday, the group reported its full-year contract volumes.

As the world’s largest futures exchange operator, the data provides a useful guide to trends in global derivatives trading. Average daily contract volume at the CME rose by 19% in 2010, reversing a 20% decline the year before. The volume of foreign-exchange futures jumped by 47%, making it the group’s fastest-growing category (see related post). Interest rate futures, which account for nearly half of the exchange operator’s daily volume, grew by 30%.

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