Eurex is holding discussions with a number of U.S. exchanges over forming a partnership to further develop its U.S. business, the international derivatives exchange confirmed on Wednesday. Any agreement that results from these talks would call for the partner exchange to take a stake in Eurex U.S., Eurex’s Chicago-based exchange subsidiary, which has struggled to compete against the Chicago Board Of Trade and the Chicago Mercantile Exchange and to build market share in the U.S. Treasury futures. Last summer, Eurex U.S. decided to focus its business on currency futures.
According to Eurex, this strategic direction was announced after approval from Eurex’s parent companies, Deutsche Borse and SWX Swiss Exchange, and a subsequent decision of the Eurex supervisory board.
Eurex currently distributes approximately 25-to-30 percent of its global benchmark futures contracts into the United States, including its benchmark fixed income and index products Euro-Bund Futures and futures on the DAX and Euro STOXX 50 indexes. Volume has grown in these products through an extension of U.S. afternoon trading hours on Eurex. In late November, trading hours for key Eurex products were extended to 3:00 p.m. Chicago time to offer increased distribution during the U.S. trading day. Since this shift, around one million contracts have been traded during the extended trading hours, with a peak of approximately 134,000 contracts on a single day, according to the release.