The Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) enjoyed its busiest first quarter ever, with continued growth in equity index products leading the way and numerous individual products in all categories also setting records in March.
Exchange-wide volume for the first three months of 2000 totalled 59,312,855, besting the prior first quarter volume record set in 1995 by nearly 3.5 million contracts. CME overall volume also set a record for the month of March, at 22,365,677 contracts.
Globex2 volume for March totalled 2,605,558, a 123% increase over March 1999. Globex2 volume year-to-date reached 6,874,670, a 108% increase over year-ago levels.
Volatile interest rate markets helped the CME’s benchmark Eurodollar contract, already the most actively traded US interest rate futures product, post its busiest March ever, with total volume of 10,197,793 – a 17% increase over year-ago levels.
EuroFX currency futures volume continued solid growth, marking their single strongest trading month with total volume of 452,393 contracts. EuroFX/Japanese yen cross-rate futures also had their single strongest month with total volume of 1,226 contracts. Other currency products marking their best March ever included futures on the Australian dollar (85,724), the Canadian dollar (280,818), the New Zealand dollar (5,822), and the South African rand (5,498).
Total Exchange-wide open interest, or the number of outstanding contracts at the close of trading, stood at 6.99 million positions at the end of March.