Bakkt in Discussions to Offer Cash-Settled Bitcoin Futures in Singapore

Bakkt COO Adam White announced Tuesday during CoinDesk’s Invest: NYC conference that the Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) subsidiary is working on adding the product.

Bitcoin futures market Bakkt intends to expand from its current physically-settled offerings to cash-settled futures before 2020.

“We have the intention of offering a cash-settled contract as well”, White said.

According to sources familiar with the plan, the new cash-settled monthly futures are to be offered through ICE Clear Singapore, the company’s Singapore-based clearinghouse, and traded on ICE Futures Singapore.

That said, futures traders signed up to the company worldwide will be able to access the product, similarly to how traders worldwide can access its current futures, offered through ICE Clear U.S.

The new product is a response to customer demand and will be based on the data provided by Bakkt’s physically-settled bitcoin futures product, White said.

While Bakkt is targeting a launch date before the end of the year, CoinDesk’s sources said the company is still in discussions with the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS).

Bakkt, first unveiled in August 2018, spent more than a year building and launching its physically-settled bitcoin futures contracts, in which customers receive the actual bitcoin on a contract’s expiration rather than the fiat equivalent.

At present, only CME offers cash-settled bitcoin futures contracts in the U.S. With its new product, Bakkt will be able to offer both.

In recent weeks, the company has announced its intention to offer options contracts on top of its existing futures product, as well as a consumer app to let customers purchase goods with bitcoin from merchants sometime next year.

On Monday, Bakkt announced that it would be expanding its custody services to any institutional clients, growing out from only offering services to customers who trade futures on ICE.

Speaking broadly on Tuesday, White noted that retail customers have largely driven the bitcoin market over the past few years.

“Retail customers can trade our monthly futures contract”, White said.

Bitcoin News Summary – May 13, 2019

The crypto market, particularly Bitcoin, has been in bull mode, surging into the weekend to reach levels not seen since November 2018. Volume remains strong, which confirms widespread participation in this rally.

Binance exchange was hacked for 7000 Bitcoins. The exchange stated several attack vectors, including phishing and malware were used. About 2% of BTC from the exchange’s hot wallet was stolen. Binance’s insurance fund, known as SAFU will cover the losses and client balances will not be affected.

WeChat, the WhatsApp of China, banned all crypto trades and token funding from its platform. The instant messaging platform was a popular venue for peer to peer trading, so the ban could significantly affect Chinese crypto users. WeChat runs its own payment service, so may view crypto as competition, or may be following the Chinese government’s restrictive policy on crypto.

Major mining firm and ASIC manufacturer, Bitmain, disclosed that its Bitcoin hashpower is down 88% since last month. It’s unclear at this time whether Bitmain has sold the bulk of its Bitcoin ASICs or transferred them to a subsidiary company.

And finally, Twitter user IamNomad reported that over 50% of BCH transactions in April were related to a single address. The address sent 587,000 transactions during April, making several micro-transactions per second. It’s possible the address is being used to simulate activity or for testing.

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