After a long history of futures and options open outcry trading, the Minneapolis Grain Exchange (MGEX) is closing its trading pits effective Dec. 19, 2008. The decision to make the transition to exclusively electronic trading was unanimously approved by the MGEX board of directors and is pending MGEX ownership approval.

The Exchange's electronic trading operations on the CME Globex electronic trading platform will remain unchanged.

This decision comes after an exhaustive study done by MGEX management at the request of the board of directors. Over the past 12 months there has been a dramatic trend away from open outcry and towards electronic trading witnessed by all U.S. exchanges, including MGEX.