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OSAKA (Kyodo) The Central Japan Commodity Exchange and the Osaka Mercantile Exchange signed a contract Tuesday under which the Nagoya-based bourse will take over the Osaka market Jan. 1.

The combined exchange will keep the Nagoya market’s current English name and be headquartered in Nagoya, officials with the two exchanges said.

After the signing ceremony, Masayoshi Amano, chairman of the Osaka exchange, said at a news conference the new exchange will “help counter the centralization of the nation’s commodity dealings in Tokyo.”

Central Japan Commodity Exchange Chairman Fumihiko Kimura expressed hope the combination will strengthen the position of the Nagoya exchange. Products currently handled by the two markets do not overlap.

Central Japan Commodity Exchange, which mainly trades in gasoline and kerosene, has been pursuing tieups with bourses abroad and has set up the world’s first scrap iron futures market.

Meanwhile, trade at the Osaka exchange, which handles natural rubber and nickel, has been sluggish, prompting it to request a merger with the Nagoya exchange in March.

The Osaka exchange will continue to operate as a branch office after the merger, officials said.

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