Boston Options Exchange set for launch this Friday

The spokeswoman added that “a couple of things still need to fall into place” before the launch date can be confirmed tomorrow. She would not specify what these are but said Box officials are waiting to hear from the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Earlier this month the SEC gave its approval for the all-electronic Box to operate, despite objections from existing US options exchanges that oppose Box’s market structure – Box plans to let brokers trade in one-cent increments rather than the typical five-cent increments that prevail in the US options markets.

Rival exchanges the Chicago Board Options Exchange and the Philadelphia Stock Exchange have both said they will immediately file with the SEC to match the Box model.

David Harris, the American Stock Exchange’s vice-president of strategic planning, said: "We, like everyone in the industry, will be waiting to see what effect Box will have on the market."

The International Securities Exchange (ISE) already operates a fully electronic model. "We were the first fully electronic options market," an ISE spokesman said. "We never expected to be the only one. The arrival of Box is part of an evolution we’ve seen in equities and futures. We welcome the competition, as it is consistent with our policies and philosophies."

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