The bitcoin futures race is on

The race to get bitcoin futures is now on. The CBOE announced Monday it would begin trading bitcoin futures on Sunday evening at the start of global trading hours.

The first full day of trading would be on Monday, Dec. 11. That would beat the CME, which has announced it, too, will begin trading bitcoin futures on Dec. 18, a week later, and the Nasdaq, which is also planning to introduce futures trading in the first half of 2018.

Bitcoin enthusiasts are hopeful that a bitcoin ETF might be coming. The SEC denied applications to start bitcoin ETFs earlier in the year on the grounds that the cryptocurrency was “unregulated,” but CBOE head Ed Tilly said he plans to reapply with the SEC for a bitcoin ETF.

The argument seems to be a simple one. The presence of a futures market will demonstrate that the cryptocurrency is sufficiently “regulated” to allow ETFs to start.

The argument may be helped by two features that will be a part of the bitcoin futures: price limits and margin rates…

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