Gaining critical liquidity is a difficult task for a new exchange, and while SMX’s first day of activity is unlikely to set any global records, it was a start.
A total of 162 contracts were traded by 6pm, of which 73 were Gold Futures.
The pattern was different on the exchange’s second day. The most active instrument was WTI Crude Oil Futures, with 39 contracts traded, worth $2.84m. Twenty-six EUR/USD Futures were traded, worth $829,000, and six physically settled 1kg Gold Futures, totalling $241,000.
Each of the FX contracts is for €25,000, while each 1,000-barrel WTI contract is settled in cash against the price of equivalent Nymex Light Sweet Crude Oil Futures.
On Thursday 26 EUR/USD Futures were traded, six Gold Futures and 41 WTI contracts. On Friday there were 43 contracts made for Gold, 10 for EUR/USD and nine for WTI.
Market participants have warned in the build-up to SMX’s launch that trading volumes may be sluggish in the short term, as the four risks offered by SMX (the other is Brent Crude in euros) are successfully listed at other exchanges, though not in the region.
“It’s not liquidity which will happen today, and even if it is 10 trades today, we are very happy because Singapore has the best regulatory mechanism and banking system,” said Jignesh Shah, vice-chairman of SMX and chairman and group chief executive of its promoter, Financial Technologies.
While SMX is eager to build liquidity, it is also considering adding new products. It already has regulatory approval for a total of 12, and Tom McMahon, CEO, said two contracts the exchange would add “soon” were futures on the yen and Australian dollar exchange rates with the US dollar.
McMahon is also considering other commodities, including crude palm oil and copper.