CME Group, Inc.

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CME Group
Founded July 12, 2007 through Chicago Mercantile Exchange Holdings and CBOT Holdings merger
Headquarters Headquarters: 20 South Wacker Drive, Chicago, IL 60606 (plus other CME Group offices domestic and international)
Key People Terrence Duffy, executive chairman; Charles P. Carey, vice chairman; Craig Donohue, CEO; Phupinder Gill, president
Products Interest rate, equity index, foreign currency, commodity futures and options and alternative investments (e.g. weather, real estate)
Twitter @CMEGroup
Facebook Group CME Group

CME Group, Inc. (CME), based in Chicago, is the world's largest derivatives exchange. It was formed by the $11.6 billion merger in July 2007[1] [2] of the 109-year-old Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) and the 159-year-old Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT), its former rival.

On Aug. 22, 2008, CME Group also acquired the energy giant NYMEX Holdings, Inc., its second acquisition in little more than a year.[3] CME Group now handles roughly 90 percent of all futures in the United States.

The CME's product complex spans all major asset classes, including: futures and options on interest rates, equities indexes, currencies, commodities, energy products, precious metals, and alternative investment instruments such as weather and real estate derivatives. Its on-exchange activities have been supplemented with a push to offer clearing and execution services to the over-the-counter and swaps markets.

According to the exchange, 2010 volume averaged 12.2 million contracts per day, up 19 percent from 2009. Highlights for the year included average daily volume growth above 40 percent for foreign exchange (FX) and metals products, as well as double-digit growth in interest rates, energy and agricultural commodities. Year-end open interest for 2010 increased 9 percent compared with year-end 2009. Fourth-quarter volume averaged 12.0 million contracts per day, up 17 percent from fourth-quarter 2009.[4]

Total annual trading volume for CME Group (including CBOT and NYMEX) in 2010 was over 3 billion contracts, up a total of 19 percent from 2009.[5]

In January of 2012, it was announced that CME Group and the National Futures Association (NFA), in conjunction with the InterContinental Exchange (ICE), the Kansas City Board of Trade (KCBOT) and the Minneapolis Grain Exchange (MGEX) had formed a joint committee to review how self-regulatory organizations could strengthen current safeguards for customer segregated funds held at the firm level in light of the MF Global bankruptcy.[6]

Integration of CME and CBOT

Earlier attempts between the two exchanges to reach a merger agreement had been stonewalled by floor traders, when both exchanges were member-owned. The CME went public in 2002 and the CBOT in 2005, paving the way for a possible merger. By late 2008, the CME had closed its trading floor and move its remaining pits to the CBOT building.[7]

Member Privileges The formation of CME Group did not result in any change to trading privileges for CME and CBOT members.[8] Currently, CME and CBOT members continue to trade on the same terms as before the merger transaction. CME members can trade CME products at reduced rates directly from the trading floor, and CBOT members are able to enjoy the same benefits on CBOT products only. To cross-trade products offered by the individual exchanges belonging to CME Group, participants need to have memberships at each of the individual exchanges. Additionally, CME and CBOT membership types, fees and requirements vary, as do terms for purchasing and leasing memberships.

Operational Integration. A massive integration plan, incorporating operational, staffing and communications issues with customers, stockholders and staff began, to the extent allowable by the U.S. Department of Justice, a number of months before the merger of CME and CBOT was sealed in July 2007. Though the CME Group headquarters office is located at 20 South Wacker Drive in Chicago, all trading floor operations moved from the CME trading floor to the CBOT floor at 141 West Jackson by mid-2008.

In addition, in January 2008 all legacy CBOT products migrated successfully to the CME Globex platform from e-cbot.[9]. CBOT had already moved clearing of all trades to CME Clearing from its legacy clearing provider, the Board of Trade Clearing Corp., in 2003; thus, this was one huge operational hurdle that did not require consideration during the migration.

NYMEX Acquisition Timeline

In late January 2008, CME Group officially responded to rumors regarding a potential NYMEX acquisition, indicating that the rumor was factual. Roughly a month-and-a half period of negotiations followed to sort out details of the proposed $11-billion merger, with the proposed merger announcement made on March 18, 2008.[10] [11][12] The terms finalized in March 2008 called for Nymex shareholders to receive $36 and 0.1323 shares of CME for each Nymex share. It also included a bid to buy the 816 Nymex memberships for $612,000 each.[13]

On June 24, 2008, CME Group received an unconditional approval from the Department of Justice to acquire Nymex. CME also followed up with a slightly sweetened offer in June 2008, announcing a CME share buyback plan with a special dividend of $5 per share if the deal were approved. The buyback and dividend was expected to cost CME $4 billion in debt.[14]

On July 18, 2008, CME revised its bid again increasing the offer for Nymex memberships to $750,000, from $612,000. The offer would allow members to keep their rights to lease seats for floor trading and the seat market would be maintained. The trading floor would also remain in New York as long as it was profitable and met certain trading thresholds. CME, which called the deal its "full and final offer" did not change the cash and ratio of shares. [15] The shareholder vote on Aug. 18, 2008, was successful in terms of the acquisition.


CME Group offers contracts in all major asset classes:

CME Group said in May of 2010 that it was targeting a third-quarter launch for new services to handle swap transactions tied to interest rates and currencies. CME aimed to expand its clearing services for over-the-counter derivatives as the exchange operator looks to June for a full roll out of its nascent credit-default swap clearing capability.[16]

In early March of 2012, it was announced that CME Group and MGEX, a designated contract market (DCM) and derivatives clearing organization (DCO), would launch of MGEX-CBOT Wheat Spread Options to begin trading on March 26 of that year. These contracts are listed with, and subject to, the rules and regulations of CBOT. MGEX-CBOT Wheat Spread Options are unique hedging tools based on the price differentials between hard red spring wheat futures listed on the Minneapolis Grain Exchange, Inc. (MGEX) and soft red winter wheat futures on the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT), which are the result of fundamental supply and demand factors and varying protein levels between these two distinct classes of wheat.[17]

CME Group offices

CME Group offices are located in Chicago (headquarters), London, Hong Kong, Tokyo, Sydney and Washington, D.C.


CME Group Holiday Calendar and Annual Report

Social Networking

CME Group has a company page on Facebook [18] and has a presence on Twitter.[19]

Web Site

In mid-January 2008, CME Group launched its new Web site in an effort both to combine data from CME and CBOT and to enhance usability by those visiting the site. A virtual tour[20] of new features and navigation is available. was decommissioned on March 7, 2009.[21]

Open Markets Blog

CME Group's Open Markets blog provides a forum for the discussion of a range of topics pertaining to global financial markets.

All the bloggers on Open Markets are CME Group employees, unless otherwise noted. In general, they speak on behalf of the company but will indicate when a particular viewpoint reflects their own thinking rather than CME Group’s. The blog also invites those interested in appearing as guest bloggers to contact them at [22]


Contract Volume


In 2010, CME Group's (which includes CBOT and NYMEX) total annual volume was about 3.08 billion contracts.[23]


In 2009, CME Group's (which includes CBOT and NYMEX) total annual volume was about 2.59 billion contracts.[24]

2007: First year of combined volume

For 2007, total annual volume for CME Group, which combines CME and CBOT volume, reached close to 2.8 billion contracts, record-volume growth for the seventh consecutive year on a combined basis; this translates into volume of 11 million contracts per day. Total electronic volume in 2007 averaged 8.5 million contracts per day, up 41 percent from 2006.

Of the total 11 million average daily contract volume in 2007, options volume constituted 2 million contracts per day, up 14 percent from 2006. Of that, electronic options volume averaged 288,000 contracts per day for the year, up 46 percent. Thus, about 14.5 percent of total options volume in 2007 was electronic.[25]


Prior to the merger, in 2006 CME trading volume totaled a record 1.3 billion contracts, a 28 percent increase over 2005. For the CBOT, 2006 volume reached a new record of 805 million-plus contracts traded, a 19.5 percent increase. The year 2006 was the seventh consecutive record volume year for CME and the fifth for CBOT. The combined notional value of contracts traded on CME and CBOT in 2006 exceeded $1,000 trillion.

In terms of annual contract volume, interest rate futures and options - in large part due to the success of Eurodollar futures and options, the most actively traded futures and options contracts in the world - in 2007, constituted the greatest percentage of CME Group trading volume. To the CME's interest rate products have been added CBOT Treasuries, long-time mainstays and volume leaders for CBOT. Down the volume continuum are stock index and foreign currency products, and finally, commodities, which today accounts for the smallest futures segment in terms of trading volume.

The bulk (70-75 percent) of the exchange's business today is electronically traded versus by open outcry.

Financial futures, introduced only about 35 years ago (beginning with currency futures in 1972), and options on futures (starting in 1982), have taken over the futures markets in response to global needs for risk-averse strategies. While agricultural products have grown in acceptance, used to diversify portfolios and to help producers and users offset risk, they are a very small piece of the trading volume and profit landscape at CME Group.


The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission, an independent government agency, is the regulatory body for CME Group as for all other U.S. futures exchanges. Futures broker members of CME Group, known as futures commission merchants, are registered through the National Futures Association (NFA).


CME Clearing is the exchange's central futures clearing mechanism, which settles all trades and acts as the counterparty between buyers and sellers, thus virtually guaranteeing the creditworthiness of every transaction. In addition, it is the clearing entity for FXMarketSpace, an FX OTC facility jointly owned by CME Group and Reuters. In its history, CME Clearing has never experienced a default.

CME SPAN In 1988, CME launched its Standard Portfolio Analysis of Risk, or SPAN as the first system to calculate performance bond requirements solely on the basis of overall portfolio risk at both clearing and customer level.[26] SPAN calculates value-at-risk (VaR by using a formula that considers price and volatility scans, inter- and intra-commodity spread adjustments, spot risk, and short option premium risk.

By 2010, the CME SPAN entered its fourth generation, and consists of three software products:

  • PC SPAN, A desktop application that offers margin calculation across multiple exchanges.
  • SPAN Risk Manager, which combines PC SPAN with a risk analytics package that includes option pricing, stress testing, and other risk analysis.
  • SPAN Risk Manager Clearing, which adds real-time margining.

CME ClearPort
On May 31, 2002, Nymex launched ClearPort as a clearing service for bilateral over-the-counter (OTC) natural gas contracts. The platform was started in the aftermath of the Enron scandal, in order to allow energy market participants to mitigate counterparty credit risk. [27] Over the next five years, Nymex added product listings in electricity, coal, crude oil, soft commodities, and metals. After Nymex merged with CME Group, ClearPort was renamed CME ClearPort, and began listing swaps and OTC derivatives associated with other CME Group asset classes. To view a 2-minute video on CME Clearport, click HERE.

In 2008, CME introduced Clearing360, an extension of its clearing services to the over-the-counter marketplace. Clearing360 allows hedge funds, proprietary trading firms, and regional banks to substitute OTC trades for cleared only futures positions. The first OTC marketplace to participate in this service was the short-term interest rate swap marketplace, which parallels the CME Eurodollar market. CME expects to extend CME Clearing360 services to other markets in the future.

On Nov. 19, 2008, CME Group announced that it had named Michael O'Connell managing director, clearing business development. O'Connell would be responsible for developing CME Clearing products and services. He would report to Kim Taylor, managing director and president, CME Clearing.[28]

On Nov. 12, 2009, CME Group announced the launch of clearing services for cash-settled swaps on the Dow Jones-UBS Commodity Index (DJ-UBSCI SM) to be launched Monday, December 7. Clearing services will be available through CME ClearPort.[29]

CME Group clearing member firms can be found here.


ALSO SEE: CME Group History Timeline

CME Group's history (through individual and intertwining paths of CME and CBOT) is rooted in early Chicago from grain trading in the late 1840s to introduction of financial futures in the 1970s, to electronic trading in the early 1990s, and demutualization at the turn of the 21st century. At the time of the merger in July 2007, the Chicago Board of Trade was 159 years old and the CME was 109.


In a recent article in P&I Online, CME Group's Craig Donohue commented, "There are interesting things taking place right now on a global basis,”...“Having solidified our position in North America, we have really strong capabilities. We are interested in a number of the large developing economies, India, China and the Asia-Pacific region.”

CME and other exchanges over the years have sealed memorandums of understanding with stock and futures exchanges globally. The bilateral agreements basically cover a loose exchange of information and technical cooperation, but they represent bridges that could lead to stronger ties in the future. [30] However, CME Group recently signed a letter of intent with South Korea's Korea Exchange to list the popular Kospi 200 futures contract in 2008.

CME Group entered into an cross-equity swap and marketing pact with the BM&F, the world's fourth largest futures exchange, in October of 2007. The agreement gave the U.S. exchange a proposed 10 percent stake in the Brazilian operator, which would in turn acquire 1.19 million CME shares, with a four-year lock-up. CME Group will distribute BM&F’s products through the Globex platform while and BM&F will connect its distribution network to CME Globex. In February of 2009, CME Group said it was taking a pre-tax charge of $275 million on a $700 million cross-equity deal it struck in 2007 with the Brazilian Mercantile and Futures Exchange.[31]

In November 2007, Donohue told Reuters that CME Group would be interested in entering "all the BRIC countries (Brazil, Russia, India and China) and also other emerging markets that may not be as large as the BRICs," though he did not disclose what percentage of total revenue CME Group would expect to earn from those markets, indicating only that it would be significant. Donohue said the exchange's purchase of 10 percent of BM&F would add to revenue in the "immediate to near term."

Donohue said the Brazilian deal and CME Group's agreement with Korea "are examples of the kind of global strategy we might have, to diversify our products...We want to have products that trade during the Asian time zone and the European time zone, and Latin American markets and track into Asian and Latin American investors."[32]

In January of 2009, a media report indicated that CME Group Inc. would revise its approach to the Chinese market. CME dropped one memorandum of understanding with a Chinese futures exchange and is sought a better mix of risk and reward from its continuing discussions. According to a CME exchange executive, CME Group was redirecting its efforts in China to education.[33]

In August of 2009, it was announced that CME Group and Bursa Malaysia Bhd. planned a minority share swap to promote trading of palm-oil contracts outside of Southeast Asia. Under the planned revenue-sharing partnership, dollar denominated palm oil futures would be listed on CME Globex, CME’s electronic trading platform. The collaboration would also involve trade-matching services and product licensing.[34]

In early March of 2010, CME Group and the Bolsa Mexicana de Valores, S.A.B. de C.V. announced that they had entered into a strategic partnership that included an order routing agreement for derivatives products. CME Group purchased shares in the Mexican exchange valued at $17 million, or approximately 1.9 percent of outstanding BMV shares, as part of the equity portion of the agreement.[35]

CME Group Stock Quote

CME Group stock quote - quotes delayed - and history

Earnings Performance

On July 29, 2010, the company said second-quarter total revenues increased 26 percent to $814 million and operating income increased 29 percent to $515 million from the year-ago period. Second-quarter 2010 operating margin was 63 percent, up from 62 percent in second-quarter 2009. Operating margin is defined as operating income as a percentage of total revenues.[36]

Second-quarter net income was $271 million and diluted earnings per share were $4.11, up 22 percent and 23 percent respectively from the same period last year. Second-quarter 2010 results included a $20.5 million write down of goodwill of the company's subsidiary, Credit Market Analysis Limited. Excluding the write down, second-quarter diluted EPS would have been $4.43, a 33 percent increase versus second-quarter 2009.

Second-quarter 2010 average daily volume was 13.5 million contracts, up 31 percent compared with second-quarter 2009. Clearing and transaction fee revenue was $684 million, up 27 percent from $537 million in second-quarter 2009, and up 18 percent from first-quarter 2010. Market data and information services revenue was $102 million, up 24 percent from $82 million in the same quarter last year, and includes the first full quarter of revenue from CME Group's index services business. The total average rate per contract for CME Group decreased 4 percent from second-quarter 2009 to 79 cents.

As of June 30, the company had $409 million of cash and marketable securities and $2.8 billion of debt. During the quarter, the company paid down $300 million of debt.

CME Group Podcasts/Videos


In late 2011, CME Group Executive Chairman Terry Duffy testified before three separate Congressional panels investigating the bankruptcy of MF Global. CME Group was the designated self-regulatory organization for the bankrupt FCM. Duffy said in his testimony that customer money had been transferred out of segregation to firm accounts and commingled. [37]

On July 14, 2010, CME COO Bryan Durkin urged the Commodity Futures Trading Commission to give more study to the role of high-frequency trading and algorithmic trading before increasing electronic market regulation.[38] Durkin said tighter regulation could limit the liquidity and efficiency boost from these trading methods. About a quarter of major global futures volume comes from professional high-frequency traders, and the share is expected to increase, according to consultancy Aite Group.[39]

On March 10, 2010, CME Group entered a significant cross-listing partnership with India's largest listed-equities market, the National Stock Exchange of India, involving benchmark stock indexes in the two countries. Futures contracts on the NSE's benchmark S&P CNX Nifty Index (better known as the Nifty 50) will soon be listed on exchanges controlled by the CME Group, denominated in local currency, CME Group announced March 10, 2010.[40] In return, the NSE will be able to list their own futures contracts, denominated in Indian rupees, on the CME Group's S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average index contracts. NSE entered into a significant cross-listing partnership with the CME Group, the world's largest derivatives-exchange operator, in March of 2010, involving benchmark stock indexes in the two countries. Futures contracts on the NSE's benchmark S&P CNX Nifty Index (better known as the Nifty 50) will soon be listed on exchanges controlled by the CME Group, denominated in local currency, CME Group announced March 10, 2010.[41] In return, the NSE will be able to list their own futures contracts, denominated in Indian rupees, on the CME Group's S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Averages stock index contracts. The contracts commenced trading on July 19, 2010. Also beginning July 19, CME introduced two new contracts as part of its NSE partnership, the E-mini and E-micro S&P CNX Nifty (Nifty 50) futures.[42] On March 11, 2009, CME Group announced that it inked a deal with Markit to license indicies covering the multi-trillion dollar market on these forms of insurance against bonds defaulting.[43]

On Feb. 18 of 2009, CME Group announced it would launch a series of smaller-sized foreign exchange (FX) contracts, called Forex E-Micros, designed to enable retail traders and investors to cost-effectively access the security, transparency and liquidity of CME Group's FX products. The contracts would be listed with, and subject to, the rules and regulations of CME.[44]

On Feb. 3, 2009, CME Group reported that profits fell 69 percent in the fourth quarter of 2008 as trading houses cut back on futures operations and the exchange group wrote down $275 million on a 2007 cross-equity deal. Separately, CME said trading volumes plummeted by more than 40 percent in January 2009 compared with January 2008, with interest-rate trading down nearly 60 percent. That suggested the pace of deleveraging by financial institutions was quickening: in December, CME’s trading volumes fell by 22 percent, while interest-rate volumes were down by 49 percent.[45]

On Oct. 7, 2008, CME Group and Citadel Investment Group, L.L.C., analternative investment and technology firm, announced they had executed a non-binding term sheet to launch a joint venture company within 30 days that would be the first electronic trading platform fully integrated with a central counterparty clearing house for Credit Default Swaps (CDS). CME Clearing would be the central counterparty for this solution.[46]

On Aug. 4, 2008, CME Group announced the appointments of Helen Flanagan as a director of equity markets, and Phillip Hatzopoulos as a director of equity products - OTC. These newly created positions focus on selling and marketing CME Group's suite of equity index products.

On June 17, CME Group announced the appointment of R. Jason Weller as Managing Director, Corporate Strategy. Weller will be responsible for the research, development and implementation of CME Group's strategic plan as well as directing the company's business planning process.

On Jan. 28, 2008, CME Group issued a statement responding to rumors about the potential acquisition of NYMEX. It confirmed that the two exchanges were in preliminary discussions and had agreed to a 30-day exclusive negotiating period. Under the terms being discussed, shareholders of NYMEX would receive $36 in cash and 0.1323 of a share of CME Group's common stock (the exchange ratio), in exchange for each NYMEX share. CME Group expects to maintain trading floors in the New York City metropolitan area. The potential transaction also contemplates that NYMEX will repurchase the 816 New York Mercantile Exchange memberships upon closing of the potential acquisition for an aggregate purchase price not to exceed $500 million. CME Group has indicated that terms and conditions could change as negotiations progress and that they will make no further statements regarding the discussions until they are either consummated or terminated.[47]

On Oct. 5, 2007, CME Group for the first time surpassed one billion contracts traded electronically in a single year on the CME Globex electronic trading platform, which made its debut just 15 years earlier.[48]

On Oct. 24, 2007, CME Group reported that total revenues had increased 106 percent to $565 million and that net income had increased 94 percent to $202 million for third-quarter 2007 compared with third-quarter 2006. Diluted earnings per share rose 31 percent to $3.87 from $2.95.[49]


  1. "CME and CBOT Agree to Increase Merger Offer,” 7/6/08. CME Group.
  2. "Shareholders Approve $11.9 billion CME-CBOT Merger," 7/10/07. Seeking Alpha.
  3. "CME Group Inc. Completes Acquisition of NYMEX Holdings, Inc., Expands Its Diversified Product Offerings to Include Energy and Metals and Also Announces Preliminary Election Results. CME Group.
  4. Press Release. CME Group.
  5. Futures Industry 2010 Volume Survey. Futures
  6. Press Release. NFA.
  7. CME-CBOT Merger Creates World's Biggest Derivatives Exchange. Seeking Alpha.
  8. "Membership at CME Group”. CME Group.
  9. "Moving from e-cbot to CME Globex–Product Migration; What You Need to Know: Quick Reference for Traders,” 1/7/08. CME Group.
  10. "Big Nymex Shareholder Supports CME's Merger Plan”. WSJ.
  11. "Legacy deal could force CME to boost NYMEX offer,” Feb. 22, 2008.
  12. "CME adds political muscle to Nymex bid; Illinois, N.Y. senators back revised $9.4 billion plan as scrutiny looms,” 3/18/08. Chicago Tribune.
  13. CME boosts Nymex trading rights offer to $750,000 7/18/08. Dow Jones.
  14. CME 'sweetens' Nymex offer with buyback, dividend 6/23/08. MarketWatch.
  15. CME Group Inc. and NYMEX Holdings, Inc. Approve Revised Merger Agreement 7/18/08. CME Group.
  16. CME Group Eyes 3Q Launch For Interest Rate, Forex Swaps. Dow Jones Newswires.
  17. Press Release. Daily Markets.
  18. CME Group. Facebook.
  19. CME Group. Twitter.
  20. Virtual Tour. CME Group.
  21. Decommissioning Scheduled for March 7, 2009. CME Group.
  22. About Open Markets. CME Group.
  23. CME Group 2010 Annual Report. CME Group.
  24. Futures Industry 2010 Volume Survey. Futures
  25. "CME Group Posts Seventh Consecutive Year of Record Volume on a Combined Basis as Total Volume Approached 2.8 Billion Contracts; Exchange Daily Volume Averaged 11m Contracts per Day, Up 28 Percent,” 1/2/08. CME Group.
  26. SPAN. CME Group.
  27. CME ClearPort: Celebrating Seven Years of OTC Clearing. CME Group.
  28. Press Release. CME Group.
  29. CME Group Announces the Launch of Dow Jones-UBS Commodity Index Swap Futures. PR Newswires.
  30. "CME on lookout for further expansion". P&I Online.
  31. CME Hit By Trading Slowdown. Financial Times.
  32. "International operations to drive CME revenue".
  33. CME Plots New China Approach;Other Exchanges Stay The Course.
  34. CME, Malaysia Plan Share Swap to Boost Palm Oil Trade. Bloomberg.
  35. Press Release. CME Group.
  36. Press Release. CME Group.
  37. CME's Duffy Says MFGI Moved Customer Funds. Futures Magazine.
  38. CME against stricter rules for high-speed traders. Financial Times.
  39. High Frequency Trading in the Futures Markets. Aite Group.
  40. National Stock Exchange of India and CME Group Announce Cross-Listing Relationship. PRNewswire-FirstCall.
  41. National Stock Exchange of India and CME Group Announce Cross-Listing Relationship. PRNewswire-FirstCall.
  42. Press Release. NSE.
  43. CME Group deal with Markit Brings It Closer To Credit Default Swap Market. NewsCred.
  44. Press Release. CME Group.
  45. CME Hit By Trading Slowdown.
  46. Press Release. CME Group.
  47. "CME Group and NYMEX Confirm Preliminary Discussions”. CME Group.
  48. "CME Group Surpasses One Billion Contracts Traded on CME Globex in a Single Year; Rise in Volume Seen from Growth in Electronic Options, International Customers and Market Volatility,” 10/5/07. CME Group.
  49. "CME Group Inc. Reports Strong Third-Quarter Revenues and Profits". CME Group.


CME Group economic releases

External links