Q2 2022 Metals Update

  • 14 Apr 2022
  • By CME Group

Liquidity building in Aluminum futures

  • Product code: ALI, Bloomberg code: ALEA Comdty
  • Aluminum finished Q1 2022 +179% versus Q1 2021.
  • On March 3, 2,825 contracts of ALI were traded in one day, representing the second-highest volume per day of all time.
  • Open interest has also improved considerably since late 2021 and reached 604 contracts on March 4.

 Learn more

Launching May 2: Micro Copper futures*

  • The contract will be 1/10 the size of benchmark Copper futures and will provide an efficient, cost-effective new way to fine-tune copper exposure.
  • Micro Copper will offer robust transparency and price discovery of Copper futures in a smaller contract that enables traders of all sizes to manage Copper price risk and participate in the potential of the market.​​​​

 Learn more

Weekly metals options adding expiry days*

  • Effective May 2, Monday and Wednesday expiries will be added to Gold, Silver, and Copper weekly options to complement the existing Friday weekly options.
  • These physically settled, automatically exercised weekly option contracts offer multiple features for those who are looking for exposure to gold, silver, or copper, or simply need a more precise hedge.

Market participants turning to Gold and Silver futures in times of uncertainty

  • Conflicting macroeconomic factors have pushed gold outside of the narrow range in which it traded for the better part of 2021 and early 2022. 
  • As a result, we have seen a noticeable increase in volumes in our Micro Gold (MGC) and Micro Silver (SIL) contracts. Micro Silver ADV in March was 12K contracts (highest since March 21) and Micro Gold ADV was 90K contracts (highest since September 20).

CME Group is the venue of choice for Steel futures

  • Steel futures (HRC) continue to grow on the back of its fifth consecutive year of volume growth in 2021. Year-to-date, over $35M worth of HRC has traded per day in 2022. 
  • Current open interest sits at ~32,000 contracts, which represents nearly $1 billion in notional terms.

 Find out more about Steel futures

 Case Study: How are traders using Steel futures?

Coming soon: Event-based contracts*

Introducing event-based contracts launching Q3 2022.

Event-based contracts are designed to make it easier for everyone to trade their views on daily up or down price moves in some of the world's most widely quoted benchmark futures markets, including gold, oil, equity indices and foreign currencies. 

These new daily options on futures contracts will offer short-term trading opportunities for individuals seeking to take a position on daily price moves using smaller-value trades of up to $20 per contract.​​​​​​

 Learn more

Safeguards at CME Group

Along with being regulated by the CFTC, CME Group has multiple measures in place to help maintain orderly markets including:

Spot Month Position Limits which are monitored closely by both the Market Regulation division and the CFTC to protect against market manipulation. 

Dynamic Circuit Breakers that monitor for significant price movements during a trading session.

 Learn more about Position Limits

 Learn more about Dynamic Circuit Breakers

European Steel options launching May 2

CME Group is to launch North European Hot-Rolled Coil Steel (Argus) average price option contracts on May 2. The corresponding futures contract is financially settled based on the month average of a price assessment published by Argus Media each business day of the contract month. 

The contract will be quoted in euros per metric ton and will have a contract size of 20 metric tons. 

The European HRC Steel average price option contract will promote further penetration into the steel market. Additionally, the European HRC Steel average price option provides more flexibility in implementing a hedging strategy and trading the European steel market.

 Learn more

Aluminum Auction - latest results

On April 7, CME Group completed its latest transaction of physical aluminum through our electronic auction platform. 

In total, 275 metric tons of P1020A aluminum were auctioned for delivery in Toledo, Ohio. The transaction was completed at a price of 35.05 cents per pound premium to CME Group's physically-delivered Aluminum futures April 2022 contract, which settled at $3352.75 per metric ton on the same day.

The aluminum auction was launched to support established aluminum markets and provide a platform for market participants to contracts transact physical material anonymously in the spot market.

 Learn more ​​​

Data as of March 31, 2022, unless otherwise specified

*Pending regulatory review.

View the current version and an archive of the Metals Update online at: cmegroup.com/education/metals-update.html.