Liffe braced for tough times

LIFFE, London's financial derivatives exchange, yesterday said the exchange was braced for tough times ahead as business in October showed another sharp drop.

A day after announcing a strategic overhaul and sweeping job cuts, Liffe said October's overall volumes fell 10 per cent from September and 39 per cent year-on-year.

Volumes in October totalled 15.67 million futures and options contracts, against 17.44 million in September and 25.72 million in October 1997. Liffe's short-term interest rate products, where the exchange is still dominant, fell by 8 per cent in the month and 6 per cent in the year. Liffe attributed the decline partly to the approaching launch of the euro.