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May Average Daily Equity Options Volume Rises 25 Percent From Previous Year Month-end equity options volume rises 20 percent

Chicago—June 4, 2003

The Options Industry Council (OIC) announced today that average daily equity options volume for May rose 25.8 percent to 3,262,002 contracts as compared to 2,591,228 contracts in May 2002.

May equity options volume of 68,502,050 contracts (27,820,376 puts and 40,681,674 calls) rose 20 percent from 57,007,020 contracts (23,488,960 puts and 33,518,060 calls) in May 2002. May's volume represents the highest month-end volume for equity options since October 2002 when 70,266,228 contracts traded (30,165,139 puts and 40,101,089 calls) and is the highest May on record.

May month-end equity options open interest reached a new record with 99,220,352 contracts, surpassing the previous record set in November 2002 with 96,997,274 contracts. Month-end equity options open interest increased 23.6 percent vs. 80,259,074 contracts from May 2002.

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.

"Historically, May signifies a slow down in trading for the summer months, so we're pleased with the uncharacteristic elevation in volume this past month. It exemplifies the strength of the options product during volatile market conditions," said Paul Stevens, President, OIC. "The record equity options open interest supports our belief that investors place value on options as a long-term investment vehicle."

The highest trading day in May occurred on May 16 when 4,244,134 contracts traded. Year to date equity options volume is 306,899,128 contracts vs. 293,287,683 contracts, a 4.6 percent increase over same time frame last year.

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. 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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