CME Bitcoin Futures See Open Interest Surge as Global Volume Hits $25B

Bitcoin (BTC) derivatives trading looks set to reach record levels this month as volume spikes and open interest hovers near all-time highs.

Data from CME Group shows that as of Jan. 16, open interest for its futures products alone totaled 5,328 contracts — or 26,640 BTC ($237 million).

Open interest on track for record

The figure is higher than any monthly close CME has seen since it debuted in December 2017, with July 2019 currently in the lead with 5,252 contracts.

Open interest did surpass current levels earlier in January, reaching around 5,400 according to the latest data from United States regulator the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, or CFTC, published on Jan. 7.

As Cointelegraph reported, futures offerings have received significant attention from both investors and commentators as new participants appeared to fuel a Bitcoin price rise in 2020. 

Bitcoin futures 1-month overall volume

Bitcoin futures 1-month overall volume. Source: Skew Markets/ Twitter

As BTC/USD accelerated towards $9,000 this week, overall futures trading volume likewise saw a significant uptick. According to unofficial data from monitoring resource Skew Markets, worldwide volume hit $25 billion — the most since late October. 

“I think that's a strong signal indicating that we're reversing now and probably have bottomed out,” regular Cointelegraph contributor Michaël van de Poppe commented about the latest data.

2020 the year of “clear” institutional adoption

CME launched a new product in the form of options on Bitcoin futures earlier in January. The release came just days after competitor FTX did likewise.

The company said it considered the options a “success” as volumes reached 275 BTC by day two.

Catering to long-term demand from institutional investors has long been a preoccupation for cryptocurrency businesses. In its 2019 retrospective this week, venture capital giant Grayscale revealed annual investment totals of over $1 billion

A record for the firm, executives announced they now it was “clear” that the industry was seeing institutional adoption.