UPDATED: Nymex follows Saudi sour crude endorsement with new contracts

Nymex is to launch two sour crude oil contracts after Saudi Aramco’s announcement this week that it will use the Argus Sour Crude Index (ASCI) as a benchmark for US sales from January 2010.

The CME Group, which owns Nymex, today announced the launch of trading and clearing services for cash-settled trade-month swap futures on the ASCI. Trading is scheduled to begin November 23 on the New York trading floor.

Launched in May by Argus Media, the ASCI represents the daily value of US Gulf Coast medium sour crude, based on physical spot market transactions. The daily ASCI price is the volume-weighted average of all deals done for three grades of crude combined: Mars, Poseidon and

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