The highly anticipated Aptos, a VC-backed Layer 1 solution born from the ashes of Meta’s defunct Diem project, launched its mainnet on Monday. And its native cryptocurrency, APT, is now set to make its market debut.
APT is to Aptos what ETH is to Etherealor SUN for Solarium. The native currency of the Aptos block chain will start trading later today on Binance, Coinbase, and FTX. The cryptocurrency will also be available to trade on MEXC, PerBit, Bitfinex, Huobi Y OKX starting at 9 p.m. ET on October 18 (or 1 a.m. UTC on October 19).
But some of those exchanges are launching another APT product. Binance, FTX, Y OKX they have said that they will launch perpetual contracts for APT just one hour after the token starts trading.
Perpetual contracts are a type of futures contract that allow investors to bet on the price movements of an underlying asset. Being short on an asset means that an investor thinks the price will go down; Being long on an asset means that an investor is betting that its price will rise. And since its launch on Monday, Aptos has faced a avalanche of criticism directed to the project and its first investors.
One of the biggest sticking points has been that the project team waited so long to release information about the token distribution, after it had already been leaked online. But once the news broke that 51% of the initial supply of 1 billion APTs is held by VC and another 190 million APIT core developers, the hits kept coming.
This is why there has been a lot of concern about launching perpetual options right after the token hits exchanges. With all the negative sentiment around APT and its tokenomics, open interest in options contracts betting against the nascent token could become a real-time indicator of how many people expect or encourage the project to fail.
With standard futures contracts, expiration and settlement occur at regular intervals. That’s true across all types of markets, from commodities, stocks, and cryptocurrencies. For example, CME’s micro Bitcoin and Ethereum options have weekly and monthly expirations. That means an investor can bet on BTC and ETH price activity for weeks or months.
But perpetual option contracts do not have an expiration date. It gives the investor who buys it the right to buy or sell a specific amount of the underlying asset, in this case APT, at the price of their choice.
On Tuesday morning, crypto reporter Colin Wu said in Twitter that the Aptos team has been trying to persuade Binance, which is an Aptos investor, to wait two weeks before launching its APT perpetual contracts, presumably to avoid shorting and downward pressure on the APT price. Wu, however, provided no evidence or sources for his claim.
As the day progressed, FTX and OKX announced plans to launch their own perpetual contracts at the same time as Binance. Both Binance and Aptos declined to comment when contacted by decipher the present day.
The views and opinions expressed by the author are for informational purposes only and do not constitute financial, investment or other advice.
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