Selling options on euro people...
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Selling options on euro people...

You won't see these options being traded on the floor at Liffe, but Shahram Nikpour at Bossard Consultants thinks that options on information technology firms are already hot property.

Why? Because of Emu.

The idea behind such options is that certain American and German banks are hoping to bypass the inevitable shortage of IT and software consultants' time by locking them into contracts now, which they can call on when needed ­ if the euro gets off the ground.

Nikpour is not surprised that no-one else has heard of these options: "The IT companies will provide guaranteed services, but they won't disclose it to the public as that could prove detrimental to other clients."

Not everyone is convinced. A US investment bank floated the idea last year, but decided against it when it couldn't find any IT companies viable enough to justify the risk of taking out long-term contracts with them. A fear is that a surge in demand will mean all the best staff are headhunted from the firm.

On the supply side, Chris Rees of Charteris IT Consultants was also baffled that anyone was selling these sorts of options.

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