Singapore to shut ‘open outcry’ facility, one of last in Asia

SINGAPORE, July 25, 2006 (AFP) - There will be no more shouting or waving of hands in obscure signals from September when one of Asia's last traditional "open outcry" exchange trading facilities is closed in Singapore.
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The Singapore Exchange said Tuesday its open outcry facility will shut at the close of business on Friday September 29 when all of the exchange's trades will be conducted electronically.

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The 40 to 50 traders still working the floor have dealt in Euro-yen futures and options.

When they leave the pit they will continue their work from behind computer consoles, said Magdalyn Liew, a spokesman for the Exchange.

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"There are still traditional hand signals" in the Singapore trading pit, Liew said.

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In the open outcry system, traders stand in a pit to call out their offers, using hand signals to make themselves understood over the noise.

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The chaos in the world's trading pits became an appropriate symbol of the cut and thrust of 20th century capitalism.

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The Chicago Mercantile Exchange in the United States still uses open outcry trading providing a spectacle unmatched elsewhere, especially since trade has progressively moved onto computer systems since the 1980s.

Singapore's Exchange launch

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