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OIC Announces 52.75% Increase In September Month-End Volume Year to date equity volume ahead 10.68 percent

Chicago—October 3, 2003

The Options Industry Council (OIC) announced today that September month-end equity options of 73,197,743 contracts (29,462,830 puts and 43,734,913 calls) rose 52.75 percent from 47,921,018 contracts (21,382,967 puts and 26,538,051 calls) traded in September 2002. This is the third highest month on record.

Year-to-date equity volume is 588,987,269 contracts vs. 532,151,767 contracts in 2002, representing a 10.68 percent increase. September's highest trading day for equity options volume occurred on Sept. 19 when 4,670,377 contracts traded. Average daily equity options volume for September was 3,485,607 contracts, an increase of 45.47 percent, vs. 2,396,051 contracts in September 2002.

"Historically, September is not known for surges in options volume," said Paul Stevens, President, OIC. "This month's volume and equity open interest climbs defied tradition and continued to place options volume on the path toward year-end records."

Equity open interest reached record highs for nine consecutive days in September. Beginning on Sept. 9, equity options open interest set a record high of 117,789,524 contracts, surpassing the previous record set on July 18 with 117,037,795 contracts. For the next eight days, equity open interest climbed to record highs each day and topped out on Sept. 19 with record equity open interest of 125,049,649 contracts.

Month-end equity options open interest for September was 116,149,954 contracts vs. 89,038,517 contracts in September 2002. This is a new record for month-end equity open interest and a 30.4 percent increase from the previous year. The previous record was set in August 2003 with 110,809,222 contracts.

Equity open interest is the total number of options contracts not yet exercised or allowed to expire.

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 free 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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