A brief history of the Chicago Board of Trade and the Chicago Mercantile Exchange
1848 Eighty-three merchants establish Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) at 101 South Water Street on April 3. Thomas Dyer is elected first president of CBOT.
1851 CBOT records earliest “forward” contract, for 3,000 bushels of corn.
1859 CBOT receives charter from the State of Illinois.
1861 The Civil War begins. CBOT adopts the gold coin as its standard of value.
1865 CBOT develops “futures contracts” as a formalized way of trading grain. CBOT creates world's first futures clearing operation when it begins requiring performance bonds, called “margin,” to be posted by buyers and sellers in its grain markets.
1866 First trans-Atlantic cable is laid, which facilitates communication between Chicago and foreign markets.
1871-72 The Great Chicago Fire destroys CBOT's building and records. CBOT establishes a temporary 90-foot by 90-foot residence at Washington and Market streets, known as “the wigwam.”
1873 Due to large financial institution failures, CBOT remains open during Financial Panic of 1873.
1874 Chicago produce and margarine dealers establish Chicago Produce Exchange.
1893 In honor of World's Columbian Exposition, exchange galleries are opened to the public for first time.
1898 A group of butter and egg dealers creates Chicago Butter and Egg Board.
1912 Chicago Butter and Egg Board moves into a larger trading facility at 136 West Lake Street.
1917 Upon America's entry into World War I, U.S. Food Administration suspends trading in butter and egg time contracts.
1919 Chicago Butter and Egg Board becomes Chicago Mercantile Exchange in order to conduct trading in additional agricultural futures contracts. A clearing house also is established.
1922 U.S. Federal Government establishes Grain Futures Administration to regulate grain trading.
1926 CBOT founds Board of Trade Clearing Corporation to guarantee its trades.
1928 CME moves into new headquarters on North Franklin Street.
1930 CBOT moves into its landmark 45-story building at LaSalle and Jackson Streets, built by Holabird & Root.
1936 CBOT launches soybean futures contracts.
1941 Upon entering World War II, President Franklin Roosevelt establishes Office of Price Administration, which puts ceiling prices on commodities such as butter and eggs.
1949 CME institutes auction-style market in the trading pit, in addition to blackboard system of trading.
1956 CBOT hires Robert Liebenow, its first paid, non-member president; Julius Mayer is elected first CBOT chairman.
1961 CME introduces a frozen pork belly futures contract – first futures contract on frozen stored meat. By 1968, contract is one of the most actively traded futures contract on any exchange in nation.
1964 CME introduces live cattle futures contract – first futures contract based on live animals.
1967 Electronic price display boards are installed at CBOT, replacing chalkboard markers and Morse code telegraph clicks.
1968 CBOT begins trading iced broilers, its first non-grain related commodity.
1969 CME celebrates its 50th anniversary.
CBOT begins trading silver futures contract, its first non-grain product.
1972 CME creates International Monetary Market (IMM) for the express purpose of introducing world's first financial futures contracts, a departure from agricultural commodities. Seven foreign currency futures contracts are listed upon launch.
1973 CBOT establishes Chicago Board Options Exchange, a new exchange that trades call and put options on stocks.
1974 U.S. Congress creates the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, which is responsible for monitoring the trading of futures contracts on U.S. futures exchanges.
1975 CBOT launches first interest rate futures contract, Government National Mortgage Association futures. CME and IMM merge into one institution. IMM becomes a financial division of CME.
1976 CME introduces futures on 90-day Treasury Bills, first short-term interest rate futures contract.
1977 CBOT launches 30-year U.S. Treasury Bond futures contract.
1980 CFTC orders CBOT to close after President Carter places embargo on grain shipments to Soviet Union.
1981 Eurodollar futures begin trading at CME. It is first cash-settled contract.
1982 CME creates IOM (Index and Option Market) Division and launches Standard & Poor's 500 Index futures, first successful stock index futures contract. CBOT launches first options on 30-year U.S. Treasury Bond futures.
1983 CME moves to its current home at 20 South Wacker Drive.
1984 CME establishes first mutual offset trading link between CME and Singapore Derivatives Exchange.
1987 CBOT remains open during stock market crash. It is only exchange to operate without interruption.
1991 Peggy Ogorek is first woman elected a CBOT director.
1992 Globex, CME's electronic trading platform, begins operation after hours on June 25.
1994 CBOT launches Project A, its afterhours electronic trading system for futures and options.
1997 CBOT launches the Dow Jones Industrial Average Index futures and options contracts. CBOT also opens the world's largest trading floor – 60,000 square feet. CME introduces E-mini S&P 500 contract, fastest-growing product ever launched by CME.
1998 CBOT celebrates its 150th anniversary. Board of directors establishes side-by-side trading of financial contracts.
2000 CME is first U.S. financial exchange to demutualize, converting membership interests into shares of common stock.
2002 CME is listed on New York Stock Exchange on December 6 at $35 per share, becoming first U.S. financial exchange to be publicly traded.
2003 CME and CBOT enter into a clearing agreement, under which CME agrees to provide clearing and related services for all CBOT products.
2005 CBOT has its Class A common stock listed on New York Stock Exchange at a price of $54 per share.
2006 Singapore Exchange and CBOT begin trading for Joint Asian Derivatives Exchange. CBOT and CME sign definitive merger agreement on October 17.
2007 Department of Justice approves CME Group Inc. merger proposal on June 11. CME and CBOT officially merge to form CME Group Inc., world's largest and most diverse exchange, on July 12.