ETH Futures Contracts Launch Reveals Investor Interest in DeFi and Stablecoins

ETH Futures Contracts Launch Reveals Investor Interest in DeFi and Stablecoins

The world’s leading derivatives marketplace CME Global Group launched Ethereum futures contracts on February 8 right on schedule as announced via an earlier notice on its website.

Each Ethereum futures contract represents 50ETH and CME registered 388 Ethereum contracts (19,400 ETH) by the end of the first day of trading.

Digital savings and lending platform BlockFi bought 20 contracts.

“The addition of Ether, along with our liquid Bitcoin futures and options, will create new opportunities for a broad array of clients, whether they are looking to hedge against ether positions in the spot market or gain exposure to this cryptocurrency on a regulated derivative markets,” said CME’s Head of Equity Tim McCourt.

ETH Records ATH on Day 2 of Futures Trading

On the second day of trading, the price of ETH soared 10% to record a new all-time high of $1,826 according to data from CoinMarketCap. Ethereum slightly retracted from its all-time high level but has gained 2.79% on the day to trade at $1,755 at the time of writing.


CME data shows that 137 futures contracts are currently trading, with a total of 228 contracts of open interest, compared to Bitcoin’s 17,454. The contracts are cash-settled using the CME CF Ether-Dollar Reference rate.

ETH Futures Investors are Interested In Ethereum’s DeFi And Stablecoins Ecosystem

The announcement was noticeably more hushed compared to Bitcoin futures’ launch in 2017. But according to McCourt, this is not in any way an indication of the perception of ETH in the crypto market, particularly for institutional investors. It has more to do with the specific nature of their interest in ETH futures.

“The enthusiasm for ether is a little bit more pointed and there are some specific things about ether that they like around how ether is used on the network.”

According to McCourt, CME’s investor validation process for ETH futures showed that many of the customers are interested in various Ethereum-based projects and stablecoins.

Ethereum is home to the best-performing DeFi platforms valued at billions of dollars, including Uniswap, SushiSwap, Aave, Compound, MakerDao, and Synthetix.  

However, exorbitant gas fees are still plaguing the platforms collectively, leading to financially impractical transactions and limited adoption. Messari’s founder Ryan Watkins recently summarized the current truth of transacting on Ethereum’s DeFi Ecosystem.

“You don’t need a lot of money to make big money when trading on Uniswap. Started a 2 $ETH challenge to show how it can be done. 11 days in so far and I’ve turned 2 $ETH into 0.89 $ETH. Over $1400 in gas fees with just a small $2,600 investment.-57 growth so far.”.