U.S. stock exchange operator Nasdaq is reportedly sticking with plans to launch bitcoin futures contracts early next year.
A Bloomberg report on Tuesday, citing “people familiar with the matter,” said that Nasdaq will likely still list its own bitcoin futures contracts Q1 2019, despite the weak crypto markets over the last year. It’s currently working through regulatory issues with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), they added.
Back in February, the CFTC strengthened its review process for cryptocurrency futures products. Its new checklist pertaining to Designated Market Contracts and Derivatives Clearing Organizations was aimed to assist regulators as exchanges introduce new crypto products onto the market.
The Nasdaq contracts are said to be based on bitcoin’s spot price on “numerous” exchanges, and will be compiled by New York-based investment management firm VanEck.
Nasdaq was first revealed to be preparing to offer bitcoin futures products in November of last year.
The very first bitcoin futures contracts hit the markets almost a year ago, with offerings from CBOE and CME Group arriving as bitcoin prices peaked to their all-time high near $20,000 in December.
More recently, the Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) announced it is launching a physically delivered bitcoin futures product through a new exchange called Bakkt. That launch was postponed from a December 2018 launch date to January 2019 due to the “volume of interest” in the company and the “work required to get all the pieces in place,” the firm said.