Cost of Nymex trading seat falls as screen trading surges:
"THE cost to lease one of the 816 seats on the New York Mercantile Exchange, the world's largest energy market, has plunged 75 percent as electronic trading overtakes the traditional open-outcry system.and later:
Three new seat leases, which give the holder the right to trade on the Nymex floor in Manhattan, were issued starting on Friday at US$5,000 a month, and several renewals were also signed at that price. Last month, seats were leased for as much as US$20,000 a month, according to data on Nymex's Website."
"The shift to electronic trading is drying up liquidity on the floor," said Robert Webb, a finance professor at the University of Virginia and a former trader on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. "It's totally a reflection of a lack of potential profit opportunity by trading on the floor.""And from Bloomberg:
"As part of the IPO process, seatholders were issued 90,000 shares in Nymex for each seat they owned. Those shares are now worth about $11 million. Prior to the IPO, Nymex members traded the shares among themselves, often for about $45 each, valuing a seat at about $4 million just a month ago.So while trading is still taking place, it is migrating more and more to electronic markets and not the floor.
The trading right component of a Nymex seat yesterday sold for $500,000, according to Nymex's Web site."