Nasdaq to launch options market

7 September 2006

Nasdaq Stock Market has announced plans to launch its own equity and index options market, due to be introduced in late 2007.

The index is set to put Nasdaq up against the New York Stock Exchange which is also intending to develop the options market.

"The options market is on the verge of a transformative change, driven by the Securities and Exchange Commission's call for quotes in increments of pennies versus nickels," commented Nasdaq's executive vice president Chris Concannon.

"The move to decimalization will shift the competitive landscape toward market platforms that are equipped to handle extremely high volume with an equally high level of efficiency."

Mr Concannon added that the investment required to develop the market would come out of existing assets, meaning that there would be no material costs to the company.

Nasdaq also said that computer technology acquired through the purchase of INET electronic exchange in 2005 would be used in setting up and running the market.

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