The ICE Skates Into Crude, Refined Oil Markets

Things are skating along for the Atlanta-based Intercontinental Exchange, "The ICE," which yesterday said that it has expanded its trading platform to now include global crude and refined oil products. Natural gas and power are expected to slide into play before the end of the year. Trading in those markets was to begin immediately.

The Internet-based electronic marketplace was launched in March by some of the largest oil companies and investment bankers in the world, and began trading precious metals in August (see Daily GPI, Aug. 25). Initial investors were BP, Deutsche Bank AG, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley Dean Witter, Royal Dutch/Shell Group, SG Investment Banking and Totalfina Elf. Continental Power Exchange also joined at the time to provide trading technology and the management team.

In July, six more energy partners, which had formed the Energy Trading Platform Holding Company earlier in the year, purchased an interest in The ICE (see Daily GPI, July 27). The six companies, American Electric Power, Aquila Energy, Duke Energy, El Paso Energy, Reliant Energy and Southern Company Energy Marketing, accounted for trading nearly 1 billion MWh of electricity and 42 Bcf/d of natural gas in North America in 1999.

In its first week trading precious metals, The ICE did 1.4 million troy ounces of gold with a notional value of $270 million, and 27 million troy ounces of silver weighing in at an estimated value of more than $130 million. There were no additional figures on the level of current trading. To learn more about the platform, visit the Web site at www.intercontinentalexchange.com.

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