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Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Ship Derivative Traders Urge Baltic Exchange to Start Platform

Wednesday, 19 August 2009

Shipping-derivative traders urged the Baltic Exchange Ltd., the world's largest shipping bourse, to create a single electronic platform to handle the contracts. The Freight Market Information Users' Group of traders said almost 88 percent of its members backed the move. The results of the vote were sent in an e-mail to members today, a copy of which was obtained by Bloomberg News. Stefan Albertijn, chairman of the group's dry bulk section, said the e-mail was accurate. The request, sent to the bourse's Chief Executive Officer Jeremy Penn, would require all existing freight-derivative brokers to have access to the new platform, run under unified rules and with an option to convert it into a regulated exchange. The contracts are currently traded on a bilateral basis and not always through a clearinghouse.
The debate on a single electronic platform was spurred by the threat of increased oversight by regulators on commodity trading outside of exchanges, Albertijn said by phone July 28.
The Baltic Exchange, owned by its members, provides assessments of shipping costs. The data are used to settle most freight-derivative contracts. The Baltic Exchange's Penn declined to comment when contacted by phone yesterday.

Source: Alaric Nightingale,Bloomberg