OKEx Introduces USDT-Settled Futures

OKEx is the first exchange to offer stablecoin-settled futures for multiple coins.

Cryptocurrency exchange OKEx, one of the most active market operators, is launching a new series of futures settled in Tether (USDT), announced the exchange in a message to Coindesk. The futures market will include the pairings of Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), EOS, XRP, Bitcoin SV (BSV) and Tron (TRX).

The trading will start on November 6, and offer leverage between 1 and 100 times. Settling the futures in USDT means traders will not have to hold the various coins as collateral. Currently, OKEx holds significantly less USDT, at around 24 million, at least in its known wallets.

This would also mean purely USDT trades and positions could be taken, to bet on price moves from the basket of digital coins.

OKEx was the top crypto exchange in September, based on general statistics, outpacing even Binance. The exchange, which has been accused of allowing faked volumes, still sees significant growth from Chinese traders.

OKEx carried more than $1.02 billion’s equivalent in trades this Tuesday, after the recent surge in activity.

Futures trading is picking up as a tool to achieve larger returns, in a market where spot trading no longer sees high volatility. Most exchanges offer futures for BTC as the most liquid coin. Binance is one of the markets seeing a boom in futures trading, although so far BitMex is still the leader.

The Bakkt futures are also picking up of late, especially after the recent rally for BTC. Bakkt expanded its trading to 242 BTC this Tuesday, still tamer than crypto-to-crypto exchanges.


Bakkt plans to open options on futures this December 9, offering additional tools to offset BTC price risk.

USDT is becoming increasingly important in the crypto ecosystem. As altcoin trading stagnates, futures markets with leveraged trading may bring back the chance for higher returns, not seen on spot markets. Most of the assets in the OKEx futures market already have large-scale activity against USDT, in comparison to smaller, less prominent altcoins.

The addition of TRX to the mix is due to the active issuance of USDT on the TRON network, as the coin sees heightened activity with recent trading competitions. More than 350 million USDT are now on the TRON network, and around 1.9 billion on the Ethereum network.

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