Membership categories

The London Metal Exchange (LME) has seven categories of membership within the Base Service, and three categories of membership within the LMEprecious Service, each with its own criteria and capabilities.

Category 1

These members have the exclusive right to trade LME Contracts by open outcry in the Ring, in the telephone market and on LMEselect and are entitled to issue Client Contracts to their clients. As clearing members, they are permitted to clear trades on their own behalf and on behalf of their clients and, as a result, must be members of the Clearing House.

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Category 2

These members are clearing members and are permitted to trade LME Contracts in the telephone market and on LMEselect and issue Client Contracts. As clearing members, they are permitted to clear trades on their behalf and on behalf of their customers and, as a result, must be members of the Clearing House.

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Category 3

These members are clearing members and are permitted to trade LME Contracts in the telephone market and on LMEselect but are not permitted to issue Client Contracts, being proprietary traders. As clearing members, they are permitted to clear trades on their own behalf only and, as a result, must be members of the Clearing House. 

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Category 4

These members are not clearing members and must appoint a designated clearing member to clear trades on their behalf. These members are permitted to trade Client Contracts in the telephone market and on LMEselect and are permitted to issue Client Contracts.

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Category 5

These members may be customers of Category 1, 2 or 4 members, in which case they receive Client Contracts but are not permitted to issue them, or they may be physical market participants who wish to be associated with the LME brand. Category 5 members are not required to be regulated.

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Category 6

Individuals within the industry who wish to be close to the LME community in particular.

Category 7

An honorary membership conferred on individuals at the discretion of the Directors.

General Clearing Member

General Clearing Members (GCM)'s can trade and clear LMEprecious Contracts on behalf of themselves and their Clients.

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Individual Clearing Member

Individual Clearing Members (ICM)'s can trade and clear LMEprecious Contracts on behalf of themselves.

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Non-Clearing Member

Non-Clearing Members (NCM)'s can trade LMEprecious Contracts on behalf of themselves and their Clients, but must clear trades via an Administrative Clearer who is an LMEprecious GCM.

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Regulatory Requirements:- LME Base (Categories 1 - 4) and LMEprecious members must be regulated by the UK Financial Conduct Authority, a competent authority of an EEA State or benefit from an exclusion under the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 (Regulated Activities) Order (“RAO”).

Members wishing to issue LME registered client contracts to customers will need to demonstrate applicable regulatory authorisations.

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For further information please email our Client Advisory team.