Hong Kong Mercantile Exchange goes live

HONG KONG, 18 May, 2011 – The Hong Kong Mercantile Exchange (“HKMEx”) officially began trading today at 8am HKT with 18 members on board, marking the beginning of a new chapter in global commodity trading.

The first contract available for trade by market participants is a 32 troy ounces gold futures contract denominated in US dollars, with physical delivery in Hong Kong. As of 5:30pm HKT, HKMEx gold for August delivery traded at US$1,492.7 per troy ounce. A total 3,415 contracts were traded. Total value of contracts traded since HKMEx launched at 8am HKT was US$163.33 million. Trading will close today at 11pm. The first-ever contract traded on HKMEx was conducted by exchange member ICBC at 8am HKT.

Today’s launch is a significant milestone in the Asian commodity industry. It also further strengthens Hong Kong’s status as an international financial centre,” said HKMEx Chairman Barry Cheung. “We’re very pleased with our trading volumes so far. It shows strong support from our members, as well as the greater financial community at large, who together have helped make our debut today the success that it is. It clearly shows that there is indeed demand for a gold futures contract providing physical delivery, and designed with Asian needs in mind.”

Albert Helmig, President of HKMEx, said: “With our launch today, we are well on our way to becoming the world’s gateway for commodities trading with China. With our strategic location in Hong Kong, HKMEx is ideally positioned to facilitate trading in commodities between China and the rest of the world. Our launch today marks a new era in how the world trades in commodities with China.”

The exchange received authorisation from Hong Kong’s Securities and Futures Commission as automated trading services (ATS) provider on April 27. HKMEx began trading with 18 members on board. They include 15 broking members: BOCI Securities Ltd, Celestial Commodities Ltd, CES Capital International Co. Ltd, Chief Commodities Ltd, GF Futures (Hong Kong) Co., Limited, ICBC International Futures Ltd, Interactive Brokers LLC, KGI Futures (Hong Kong) Ltd, MF Global Hong Kong Ltd, Morgan Stanley Hong Kong Securities Ltd, Nanhua Futures (Hong Kong) Co., Limited, OSK Futures Hong Kong Ltd, Phillip Commodities (HK) Ltd, Tanrich Futures Ltd and TG Securities Ltd. The three clearing members are: Interactive Brokers (UK) Ltd, MF Global UK Ltd, and Morgan Stanley & Co International Plc.

HKMEx is backed by global and regional shareholders including China’s ICBC and COSCO Group, as well as Russia’s En+ Group. HKMEx’s trading hours run from 8am to 11pm HKT.

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