The Dubai Mercantile Exchange (DME) announced today that two new trading records were set in July 2010 as the exchange entered its fourth year of operations.
Total open interest in its flagship DME Oman Crude Oil Futures Contract (DME Oman) during July 2010 reached a new record of 20,160 contracts. Open interest is the total number of outstanding futures contracts held by market participants and is regarded as a leading performance indicator in the industry. Open interest in DME Oman has increased steadily in 2010, the latest figure exceeding the previous total open interest record of 19,867 contracts set in February 2010.
The DME also announced that the number of DME Oman contracts going to physical delivery has reached an all-time high, with a record 15.1 million barrels due for physical delivery in September 2010, surpassing the previous high of 14.1 million barrels set for delivery in August 2010.
DME Oman is the largest physically delivered crude oil futures contract in the world with an average of 12 million barrels per month delivered through the exchange in 2010. Since its launch in June 2007, more than 324 million barrels of Oman crude have been delivered through the DME.
The DME has reported a 130% increase in liquidity since 2008, averaging 2,930 lots per day since the start of 2010, equivalent to approximately 3 million barrels of oil traded daily.
Making the announcement, Thomas Leaver, Chief Executive Officer of the DME, commented: "Today's announcement provides further compelling evidence of the market's growing confidence in the DME Oman contract as a transparent and effective mechanism for pricing Middle East sour crude oil. These two new records clearly demonstrate the strengths of DME Oman, which is rooted firmly in the fundamentals of supply and demand."
The DME was launched in June 2007 with the goal of bringing fair and transparent price discovery and efficient risk management to East of Suez, the world's fastest growing commodities market and the largest crude oil supply/demand corridor in the world. Today, DME Oman is the explicit and sole benchmark for Oman and Dubai crude oil Official Selling Prices (OSP), the historically established markers for Middle East crude oil exports to Asia Pacific.