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Bakkt Bitcoin Futures Volume Breaks All-Time High

Bakkt, the Bitcoin derivatives brainchild of the Intercontinental Exchange (ICE), reported a new all-time high for its Bitcoin futures offering yesterday, with an equivalent of $200 million swapping hands.

With 15,955 futures contracts traded in a single day, Bakkt marks a 36% advance on its previous record of 12,791 contracts, which was posted on August 26th.

"Another record day in the books for our physically delivered futures: 15,955 Bakkt Bitcoin Futures were traded today, representing over $200M of volume and a 36% increase from our previous all-time high," tweeted Bakkt.

Yesterday's milestone stands in stark contrast to Bakkt's recent performance, which has offered a daily average of $84 million physically-settled Bitcoin futures, per data from market analytics firm Skew.

Compared to the first half of 2020, where Bakkt's daily volume averages struggled to climb above $20 million, yesterday's record-breaker counts as a definite, and positive, change of pace for the firm.

Bakkt Bitcoin futures stats April through September. Source: Skew

Bakkt Still Doesn't Hold a Flame to the CME

Despite being one of Bakkt's biggest days, its volumes continue to pale in comparison with its main competitor - the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME), which currently trades Bitcoin futures at a daily average of $506 million.

Ironically, while Bakkt's Bitcoin derivatives volumes soar in relative terms, the CME has witnessed a notable lull, trading well below its usual standard.

Starting the month strong, the CME posted daily volumes in excess of $1.1 billion on September 2nd, only for the figure to slump considerably, down to $262 million by September 15th.

CME Bitcoin futures stats August through September. Source: Skew

Unlike the CME, however, which settles in cash only, Bakkt offers Bitcoin futures settlements in bitcoin - a favorable attribute for many in the crypto community. Although, as market analysts have been quick to point out that in the early days of its existence, only a handful of Bakkt investors choose to accept settlement this way. 

written by

Will is a freelance journalist and copywriter based in London. He's covered the crypto industry in various roles for several years after becoming enamored with the space in 2014. He has bylines in various cryptocurrency magazines such as Decrypt and CoinTelegraph.