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London Metal Exchange (LME)

A market for trading base metals, where traded options contracts are available against the underlying futures contract.

London Metal Exchange

The world's largest futures and options exchange for metals. It was established in 1877, though it traces its roots back to 1571. The LME trades derivative products based on copper, lead, zinc, aluminum and aluminum alloy, nickel, steel, and tin. Since 2005, plastic has traded on the LME.


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In response to feedback from consultation respondents, the LME has made a number of amendments to the Financial OTC Booking Fee Policy, including exclusions from the policy for structured products and financing trades.
The tonnage corresponded to two apparent "inflows" of lead, the first of 18,425 tonnes, the second of 13,275 tonnes, in the LME daily stocks reports of February 17 and February 19 respectively.
Data from the GSVP survey reporting the prevalence, motivations and timing of LME has previously been published (14,15).
Last October, in the presence of leaders from China and the United Kingdom, LME and LME Clearing Limited signed a memorandum of understanding with CCB for strategic cooperation in areas such as industrial metal trade and Renminbi clearing services.
The association is intended to allow LME Clear to accept RMB as eligible cash collateral from its members for margin cover purposes.
But in an attempt to remedy that, the LME last year announced plans to reform the system that included linking load-in to load-out rates and cutting maximum warehouse queues to 50 days.
The "Johor shuffle", the high-volume movement of metal between live and cancelled warrant categories, has been a defining feature of this LME location for a long time and is widely believed to be tied to Chinese shadow financing.
Goldman and the LME have been sued in the US on the allegations.
The LME is the world's largest spot and futures exchange for non-ferrous metals.
The acquisition of LME Holdings represents a unique opportunity for us to acquire in one stroke a position of global leadership in the commodities market," said Charles Li, CEO, HKEx.
The transaction is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2012, after the approval from LME shareholders, UK Financial Services Authority and UK Court Sanction for scheme of arrangement, HKEx said.
Intercontinental Exchange, the second-largest US futures market, and Hong Kong Exchanges & Clearing, the world's second-biggest exchange by market value, are the remaining contenders for the LME, which handles more than 80 per cent of global trade in industrial metals futures.