DEFINITION of 'Ring Trading'

The method by which certain types of investment business is conducted at the London Metal Exchange (LME), where trading activity occurs within a six-meter diameter circle with two large display boards that show current prices. Each of the ring dealing members have a fixed seat within the ring, behind which an assistant is permitted to stand to pass orders to the ring dealing member, and to liaise with customers regarding market conditions.

BREAKING DOWN 'Ring Trading'

Trading activity takes place in designated five-minute long periods known as "rings". Ring sessions are divided by trading instrument; for instance, steel trading takes place during the first session from 11:40am-11:45am (local time) and 1:05pm-1:10pm; and during the second session at 3:30pm-13:35pm. Ring trading at the LME occurs between 11:40am and 5:00pm; inter-office telephone trading is available 24 hours a day.

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