Eurex to offer euro gold contract

From a press release issued by Eurex...

The international derivatives exchange Eurex announced that it will launch futures and options on Xetra-Gold, the leading exchange-traded commodity ( ETC ) in Germany by order book turnover. The new gold contracts are set to launch on 28 September 2010.

Xetra-Gold is a zero-coupon bond denominated in euro and issued by Deutsche Börse Commodities GmbH. Launched in December 2007, Xetra-Gold is traded on Xetra®, Deutsche Börse AG's pan-European electronic trading platform for the cash market.

"Commodities are a widely used asset class for its diversification benefits and low correlation to other markets. In particular, gold tends to be a popular investment as it's considered a safe haven during uncertain economic times. Combining two benchmark currencies, euro and gold, in a single product, Xetra-Gold has proven to be a highly liquid and widely traded instrument among European investors. The new futures and options give our members further access to the gold market and will provide more flexibility to suit their specific needs," said Peter Reitz, Eurex Executive Board member. "Furthermore, Eurex Clearing will accept Xetra-Gold as collateral starting on 27 August."

The Xetra-Gold derivatives are the latest addition to Eurex's precious metals derivatives. Since February 2009, Eurex has been offering US-dollar denominated gold futures and options based on fixing prices of the London Bullion Market. Silver futures and options based on the London Silver Fixing followed shortly after in June 2009.

The new contracts will be denominated in euro and will be physically settled with the delivery of the underlying Xetra-Gold ETC . Additionally, in a separate transaction between the holder of the ETC and Deutsche Börse Commodities, he has the right to request delivery of physical gold. Expiration dates of the derivatives will be on the third Friday of the next three calendar months as well as in March, June, September and December.

In the second quarter of 2010, Xetra-Gold achieved record inflows of 9.6 tons of gold. Electronic trading volume also totaled 757.3 million euro, an increase of 55 percent over the first quarter of 2010. Xetra-Gold is the most traded ETC available on Xetra, representing a 37 percent share of order book volume in the ETC segment.

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