The Solvent Extractors’ Association of India (SEA) has strongly opposed the move by NCDEX to extend trading time and has written to the chairman of the Securities Exchange Board of India (Sebi) not to consider this proposal. “NCDEX has proposed to extend the trading time from the existing 10 am to 5 pm to 9 am to 7 pm in the guise of alignment between agri-futures and physical market practices. The business in the physical market like APMC’s takes place up to 5 pm and no physical trade take place after closing hours. Also, major auction takes place in the morning between 10 am to 12 noon and no trading activities takes place there after.
Therefore, if the future market is allowed after 5 pm it is likely to deform the market,” BV Mehta, executive director, SEA said in the memorandum. According to him, the trading hours in most of the commodity exchanges including BMD, CBOT, CDE and NYMEX is up to 4 to 5 hours per day. The new proposed plan extends this (9 am to 7 pm) to about 10 hours per day without any break. The extended trading hours will also add to its operating cost as they have to engage additional staff to monitor the movement, he said.
The objective of the new move is to increase the volumes at the domestic exchanges, however, until the banking hours are extended the element of hedge by the trade participants would decrease and the element of speculation may go on increasing. This may not be in the bonafide interest of the stakeholders in general, he said. According to Mehta, many members expressed their serious concern over long working hours which may create health problems. “We are of the view that the current trading time is good enough and sufficient and there is no need to extend the trading time as proposed by NCDEX,” he said.