Futures markets bullish in 2004

BEIJING, Jan. 6 — Chinese stock markets may be sluggish; but not its futures counterpart. Last year’s trade volume was close to 1.8 trillion US dollars, or 36 percent over 2003.
Shanghai Aluminum contracts were the most favored among investors, due to China’s growing aluminum output and consumption levels. Nearly 14 million contracts were traded, worth over 140 billion US dollars, or double the amount traded in 2003.

Supported by the depreciation of the US dollar and strong international demand, other non-ferrous metal contracts also fetched favorable prices.
Last year, China introduced contracts for cotton, petrol, corn and soybean. Insiders say options–something new to China’s futures markets–will be launched this year. Together with sugar and bean oil futures, they are expected to be this year’s stars.
Source: China View