The underlying value of maritime freight derivatives transactions concluded in February rose 29 % on the previous month to USD 688 million.
The underlying value of maritime freight derivatives transactions concluded in February rose 29 % on the previous month to USD 688 million, while the trade volume was up 5 % to 34 758 lots1. The energy trading volume at 1 068 TWh3, was up 7 % on the average monthly volume in 2008. The trading volume was down 3 % compared to February 2008, with the number of transactions also down 3 % to 27 117, although this was still up 5% on the average monthly volume in 2008. ?February has been a very encouraging month. On the freight side the recovery has continued, with dry bulk rates and volumes surging month-on-month, the number of options transactions reaching its second highest level ever, and tanker transaction levels still well up on the end of last year. Energy trading also remains reassuringly robust, with monthly volumes above 1,000 TWh,? says Herman W. Michelet, Chief Executive of Imarex.
The number of energy transactions concluded was 27 117, down from 30,171 in January, but well above the 2008 monthly average of 25,755. Meanwhile the volume of energy traded at 1 068 TWh, was up 7 % on the average monthly volume in 2008.
Tanker and Dry Bulk Derivatives
The freight options volume was 5 135 lots, up 53 % from February 2008. The tanker futures volume was 15 625 lots in February, up 17 % from the same month last year. The dry bulk futures volume was 13 998 lots, down 21 % from the same period in 2008, but up 102 % from January 2009. Dry bulk freight rates rose sharply. This can be illustrated by the Baltic Exchange Dry Index for spot rates, which was 1 070 at the end of January and 1 986 at the end of February 2009.]
Freight Open Interest
At the end of January, open interest for dry bulk and tanker futures was 28 372 and 30 451 lots respectively (long only positions). Open interest for freight options was 32 852 lots. The open interest is the total number of lots which remain to be liquidated by either close-out trades or delivery at NOS Clearing. NOS Clearing counts only long positions. Other clearing houses often count both long and short positions into the open interest.
Freight trading and clearing members
At the end of the reporting month the number of freight derivatives clearing and trading members stood at 211, up 9 % in the last 12 months.