Nymex and Deutsche Börse plan exchange

The New York Mercantile Exchange (Nymex) and Germany`s Deutsche Börse are to launch Germany`s first energy exchange. The exchange will initially be based on the German market but is likely to offer international contracts at a later date.

Deutsche Börse and Nymex are planning to launch the exchange by the end of 1999, but have not yet finalized a location. Deutsche Börse will provide the technology for the exchange while Nymex, the world`s largest energy futures market, will give advice on which products to launch and on how to create an energy derivatives market.

Initially the exchange will offer futures contracts based on Germany`s electricity market but will later offer international contracts in competition with other exchanges in Europe. Both Nymex and Deutsche Börse indicated that the exchange would eventually be operated by the energy sector itself.

Nymex was also rumoured to be in talks with the London-based International Petroleum Exchange (IPE) which is part of the Libra consortium bidding for management of the UK`s wholesale electricity market.

The Libra consortium, consisting of IPE, Pricewater-houseCoopers, ABB Energy Information Systems and Energy Settlement and Information Services, is to offer the UK`s department of trade and industry and the electricity regulator a contract for managing the electricity wholesale market. The regulator announced in 1998 its plans to reform the wholesale market following concerns over price fixing.