ICE takes over Russell Index futures contracts

The Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) has won exclusive rights to derivatives on the Russell series of equity indexes. The deal could give the exchange the edge in the continuing takeover battle over the Chicago Board of Trade.

The agreement allows the Atlanta-based energy and commodity exchange to offer futures and options on futures based on the full range of Russell’s benchmark US equity indexes, via its New York Board of Trade (NYBOT) subsidiary.

These products are also currently offered on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange and the US Futures Exchange, but their licences are due to expire within months, ICE says. The CME is competing with ICE to take over the Chicago Board of Trade, and observers say the agreement will strengthen ICE’s bid.

NYBOT will offer the Russell indexes on the ICE electronic platform. For ICE, the agreement signifies a further diversification of its business from its core energy and commodity markets.

The agreement includes futures and options on futures on the Russell 1000, Russell 2000 and Russell 3000 indexes, including certain ‘mini’ and full-size contracts, as well as the Russell 1000 Growth and Russell 1000 Value Indexes, and the Russell 2000 Growth and Russell 2000 Value Indexes.

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