Investors will soon have yet another way to bet on — or against Bitcoin.
Namely, cryptocurrency traders will now be able to place option bets on digital money via LedgerX. That came after the Commodity Futures Trading Commission granted LedgerX approval to clear derivatives, making it the first federally regulated platform of its kind.
The approval will also give buyers of Ethereum and Bitcoin several regulated ways to lower the risk on their existing cryptocurrency bets — which may be welcome or may increase their risk in the hopes of potentially outsized returns. That’s possible because derivatives are a varied group that includes options and future contracts.
“Our recently-granted licenses give LedgerX an enormous regulatory advantage for serving our institutional customers,” wrote the company’s CEO Paul Chou in a blog post after the decision. “LedgerX offers our customers a one-stop shop for tools to buy and sell spot bitcoin, derivatives, and all manner of specialized cryptocurrency swaps.”
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LedgerX, which plans to roll out bitcoin options first starting in the fall, may also make it easier for investors to short cryptocurrencies. While it isn’t the first to offer bitcoin options, LedgerX is the first to offer options regulated by the CFTC. In 2015, a San Francisco-based bitcoin options trading platform Derivabit, also known as Coinflip, was asked to cease operations by the CFTC in 2015 for failing to register with the agency.