CME Group launches Asia-focused Bitcoin, Ether reference rates

Credits: Blockchain news

CME Group, a derivatives marketplace, is introducing Bitcoin and Ether reference rates tailored for the Asia Pacific region, highlighting the rising institutional interest in cryptocurrencies from Asia.

Collaborating with crypto indices provider CF Benchmarks, CME Group plans to launch these region-specific crypto reference rates on September 11.

These reference rates are crucial as trusted sources for determining cryptocurrency prices, particularly when settling crypto futures contracts. Starting September 11, crypto institutions and investors in Asia will have access to daily BTC and ETH reference rates published at 4 pm Hong Kong time.

While CME Group already offers reference rates for these cryptocurrencies, those are synchronized with New York and London timezones, making the new Asia-focused rates better suited for regional investors.

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Giovanni Vicioso, CME’s head of crypto products, noted that this year, 37% of crypto volume traded on CME occurred during non-US hours, with 11% originating from the Asia Pacific region.

Vicioso stated, “These APAC reference rates will allow market participants to more accurately and precisely hedge cryptocurrency price risk with timing more closely aligned to their portfolios.”

Markus Thielen, Matrixport’s Head of Research, informed Cointelegraph that the emergence of these reference rates indicates CME’s growing appeal to institutions seeking precise BTC and ETH prices during Asian trading hours.

These institutions intend to apply the daily price for investment products, potentially increasing demand from their ultimate investors. Alongside this, CME and CF Benchmarks offer reference rates and real-time indexes for metaverse-associated tokens such as Axie Infinity Shards (AXS), Chiliz (CHZ), and Decentraland (MANA).

The company’s reference rates aggregate crypto spot exchange trade data from platforms like Bitstamp, Coinbase, Gemini, and Kraken, aiming to provide trustworthy reference prices.

These rates play a role in settling futures contracts, including CME’s Bitcoin and Ether futures, tied to their London time reference rate. As institutional interest grows, jurisdictions like Hong Kong and Singapore are being closely watched for their crypto-friendly regulatory initiatives.