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Equity Open Interest Begins New Year With High Numbers Month-end equity open interest rises 15.4 percent

ChicagoFebruary 6, 2002

The Options Industry Council (OIC) announced today that January month-end equity open interest of 66,379,169 contracts rose 15.4 percent from 57,510,620 contracts in January 2001. At its highest point on Jan. 18, equity open interest stood at 93,585,732 contracts.

Equity open interest, the total number of options contracts not yet exercised or allowed to expire, is seen as an indication of longer-term investing in these instruments.

"As we begin our 10th year, the continued high levels of equity open interest suggests investors are utilizing options as a risk management tool for all market conditions," said Paul Stevens, President, OIC. "With January's high month-end volume, we hope to see the momentum continue and incite investors to learn more about options."

Month-end equity volume for January was 67,389,145 contracts (26,679,280 puts and 40,709,865 calls) vs. 73,284,884 contracts (26,106,065 puts and 47,178,819 calls) in January 2001. This month-end volume is the highest since April 2001 when 70,510,617 contracted traded. Average daily equity volume for January was 3,209,007 contracts as compared to 3,489,756 contracts in 2001.

About OIC

OIC is a non-profit association funded by the American Stock Exchange, Chicago Board Options Exchange, International Securities Exchange, Pacific Exchange, Philadelphia Stock Exchange and The Options Clearing Corporation. In 2002, OIC is celebrating its 10-year anniversary of providing investors and brokers options education. OIC's resources include: The Options Industry Services call center at 1-888-OPTIONS, an educational Web site at, evening seminars throughout the continental United States and Canada, instructional videos and educational literature and software.

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