Two new types of stock index futures began trading on Thursday on the China Financial Futures Exchange (CFFEX).
SSE50 index futures and CSI500 index futures, are designed to allow investors to bet on and profit from either gains or declines in the equity market, through buying or selling contracts of the two stock indices at a present value on an agreed date.
Previously, China had only one stock index futures -- Hushen 300 index futures, which started trading in April, 2010.
Many stock holders trade index futures to hedge against losses in the spot market.
The addition of the new index futures will help diversify financial products to better meet investors' needs, said Deng Ge, spokesman for the China Securities Regulatory Commission.
The SSE50 contract for settlement in May, June, September and December opened at 3,058.8 points, 3,051.6 points, 3,036.8 points and 3,066.6 points respectively.
The CSI500 contract for settlement in May, June, September and December began at 7,818.6 points, 7,830.6 points, 7,866.8 points and 7,928.8 points respectively.