The New York Mercantile Exchange Inc. (Nymex) will be listing a new sixth year of natural gas futures, options and swaps contracts starting after the December 2005 contract expires next year. The contracts will be listed for the current calendar year plus the next five calendar years for a maximum of 72 consecutive months.

“The new schedule is expected to encourage greater liquidity in the farther-dated months, enhancing trading and risk management opportunities,” said Exchange President James E. Newsome.

Nymex said the new contracts will be listed for natural gas futures, Henry Hub swap futures, Henry Hub penultimate swap futures, natural gas options and European-style natural gas options contracts.

Previously, the exchange added months on a rolling basis each month, except for natural gas options which were added on a quarterly basis after the 12th consecutive month. Currently, the natural gas futures and options contracts are listed through December 2010.

At the termination of trading in the December 2005 contract, all months for calendar year 2011 will be available for trading. The new listing schedule does not apply to natural gas basis, index, or swing swap futures or to calendar spread options contracts.

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