Monday, October 17, 2005

The Scotsman - Business - Oil traders' quiet revolution ends as open outcry returns

Susan Nelson reports:

TURBULENT times hit oil markets when hurricanes Katrina and Rita blew destruction into America's Gulf coast and slashed refinery capacity by at least 18 per cent. The price of crude soared beyond $70 a barrel.

But while our attention has been grabbed by these dramatic events, other changes that could affect oil market trading have been gathering apace.

In April, London's International Petroleum Exchange (IPE) finally closed down its open-pit trading floor after 25 years of activity.


But just when we thought that open-pit trading was being jettisoned as a colourful anachronism, the ebullient Americans have arrived in town in the form of NYMEX Europe, which launched its first open-outcry oil market in London last month...

And so the question has come up - which is better for the markets, open-trading pits or electronic trading? She looks at the pros and cons of each.

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