SINGAPORE, Nov 25 (Reuters) - Jefferies Bache Ltd is to quit its presence on the London Metal Exchange's open outcry floor as it shifts its membership to category two or broker clearing member of the exchange, the LME said on Monday.
Jefferies' change in status takes effect immediately, the LME said in a notice to members. Broker clearers have the same abilities as floor dealers, being able to trade via electronic platforms and telephone markets as well as being clearing house members but without maintaining a presence on the floor.
Jefferies burst on to the LME last year, snapping up a host of traders from its competitors to debut in the top tier of the exchange's floor dealers, a year after buying veteran commodity futures brokerage Prudential Bache for $430 million.
But its about face takes the number of LME floor dealing members down to 10 at a time when the long term viability of one of the world's last open outcry exchanges is in question.
Barclays quit floor dealing this time last year.
The LME was bought last year for $2.2 billion by Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing (HKEx) which has only guaranteed the floor will remain until at least January 2015.