What is Lightning Futures?


In Lightning Futures, you can margin trade bitcoin by making a deposit and then making a settlement.

An open position on the Lightning Futures (Bitcoin Futures) board can be closed before its maturity date by performing a counter-sale by means of net settlement. If the position is not closed by its maturity date, it will automatically be settled using an SQ (special quotation). The SQ is determined by using the spot board price at the maturity date by the Itayose method.

Amplify the reach of your funds by taking advantage of Lightning Futures's 2x* leverage capabilities.

Increase your trading efficiency and achieve better results by trading with more than your original deposit amount.

In addition, you can take a short position, allowing you to make a profit even when the Bitcoin prices drop.

Trading is open on weekends and holidays as well.

"Itayose" is a method for setting a price that matches quantitatively by repeatedly performing buy and sell orders according to a prescribed order of priority, and executing a trade with that price as the single consensus price. It is the method used for setting the SQ (settlement price) on a Lightning Futures (Bitcoin futures) trade sheet. Please see the table below for the maturity schedule for Itayose, margin settlements, etc.

The max leverage is different for corporate accounts.

Types of futures

bitFlyer supports three different types of futures trading.

  • - Weekly futures (matures on the upcoming Friday)
  • - Biweekly futures (matures one week after the maturity date of the one week futures)
  • - Quarterly futures (matures on the last Friday of March, June, September, and December)

The next quarterly futures will be listed two weeks before the maturity date of the current one.

Types of futures

How to check the maturity date

The maturity date is displayed as follows.

Futures are displayed as "BTC/JPY-*****20**"

For example, "BTC/JPY-11MAY2018" matures on May 11, 2018.

Maturity schedule
  • Commence taking orders (after commencement, orders will not be executed until the market opens) for futures trades with a new maturity date by the Itayose method
  • Open futures trades with a new maturity date (after which, trading will commence as usual)
  • Update aliases for futures trades for the new maturity date
    Stop futures trades that have reached their maturity date
  • Commence BTC spot board Itayose method
  • An SQ price is determined by the spot board
  • Commence settling positions by using the SQ price determined by the spot board
    As necessary, the results of the execution will be displayed after the net settlement has been completed.

The schedule above is an approximation. It may change due to various circumstances.

Order of priority is as follows.

  • Sell order
    1. (1) Market order
    2. (2) lowest price limit order
    Buy order
    1. (1) Market order
    2. (2) highest price limit order

If you have placed multiple limit orders at the same price, the orders will be executed in the order they were placed. All market orders placed before the single-price auction is determined (including orders placed prior to scheduled maintenance) will be considered to have been placed at the same time.

  • Spot trading
    Buy low and sell high
    • Spot trading:Buy low and sell high
  • Lightning Futures
    There are opportunities for profit in both bear and bull markets with Lightning Futures.
    • Long Position
      Long Position
    • Short Position
      Short Position

Benefits of Lightning Futures

Leverage trading is available

Trade Bitcoin with up to 2x the value of your margin deposit.

2x leverage means that if, for example, you have a margin deposit of 100,000 JPY, you can trade with the value of 200,000 JPY.

Make a large trade with a small deposit
Make a large trade with a small deposit.

You can trade with large amounts but be aware that there is a risk you may sustain losses greater than the amount of your deposited funds.

Trade 24 hours a day, 7 days a week!

Being able to trade on weekends and national holidays is a merit unavailable with ordinary financial instruments. Have fun trading whenever you like at times that best suit you.

Lightning Futures trading times
Trade 24 hours a day, 7 days a week!

*Excludes maintenance periods. Please click here for more information.

Other benefits

Lightning Futures has many other benefits!

  • start with 1/1000BTC
    You can start with just a small amount

    The minimum order size for Lightning Futures is 0.001 BTC.

    Assuming a rate of 1 million JPY/BTC, you can trade from 1,000 yen approximately (if the leverage is 2x, the deposit margin will be 500 JPY).

  • 特殊注文可能
    You can send special orders too

    With Lightning Futures, there are various ways to place orders. By combining an array of order terms, you can place orders with a higher level of freedom than before. Both stop-loss and take-profit orders can be easily placed depending on your combination of order terms, allowing users unable to keep an eye on the Bitcoin market during the day to still enjoy trading.

  • API公開
    API is available

    By making use of the bitFlyer API, you can view orders, published trading history, and order books.

    You can also place new orders, cancel existing orders, and check your account balance.

    In addition to its REST API, bitFlyer also offers a realtime API feed.

    If you use realtime API, you can even receive data on iOS, Android, Ruby, JavaScript, Java, Objective C, .NET, and Node.js.

  • ビットコインで証拠金の差し入れが可能
    Margin deposits can be deposited in Bitcoin

    You can now deposit Bitcoin as collateral on Lightning Futures in addition to Japanese yen.

    Your Bitcoin margin deposit is valued at 50% of the last trade price on Lightning Spot (BTC/JPY).

About margins

Before being able to trade on Lightning Futures, it is necessary to make a margin deposit.

Lightning Futures regularly checks the status of margin deposits. If the retention rate of your deposit drops below a fixed level (maintenance margin), it will trigger a "margin call" or "sell out".

For more details about how we handle margin, please refer to out Lightning Futures (Bitcoin futures) Terms of Use.

For rules on margin calls and sell out, please refer to Lightning Futures trading rules.

The margin deposit required to make an order with 2x leverage is determined with the following formula.


Additionally, the maintenance margin can be determined using the method below.

  • Profit and loss (valuation), required margin, etc. are combined across Lightning FX/Futures markets.

    Please note that positions on different markets do not offset each other in calculation of required margin.

Glossary of Terms

Profit or loss from valuation

(P/L of acquired open positions) - (swap loss) - (fees)

Margin Deposit

The is the amount of deposited Japanese yen.

*The value of your Bitcoin margin deposit is calculated at 50% of the last traded price of Lightning Spot (BTC) market in Japanese yen.

Required margin

This is the current required margin deposit for open positions and new orders.

(Required margin for open positions) + (Required margin for new order)

Valuation margin

Margin Deposit + Profit or loss from valuation

Maintenance margin rate

This is the ratio of Valuation Margin to the Required Margin

This ratio evaluates the criteria of a sell out.

Valuation Margin / (Required Margin)

Margin Call (Mgn. Call)

This is the margin that must be deposited to resolve margin call before the margin call due date, which occurs when the maintenance margin rate falls below 100% at the timing of determination of margin call.

Amount available for withdrawal

This is the amount that you can withdraw.

The smaller of (Valuation Margin - Required Margin) or Margin Deposit. However, a withdrawal may be limited by other conditions.

Profit or loss from valuation of an acquired open position

This is the profit or loss valuation for the open position.

Loss from unsettled swap points

This is the total amount of unsettled swap points.


This is the fee for the trade.

New Open Position

This is a new order creating an open position.

Repayment order

This order repays the amount of an existing open position.

Margin Rate

1 / Leverage

Open Position Required Margin

This is the required amount of margin deposit for the open position.

This is the total amount of (Execution Price * Position Size * Margin Rate) for each open position. (Values are rounded up after the decimal point.)

Order Required Margin

This is the Required Margin for a specific order.

This is the total amount of [Order price * Position Size * Margin Rate] on each order. (Values are rounded up after the decimal point.)

Combined open interest

The maximum number of positions you can hold are 500 BTC-FX, 500 BFT per product (including order amounts).

How to make a margin deposit

  1. Click the menu icon in the upper-left corner.
    Click the menu icon in the upper-left corner.
  2. Click "Funds."
    Click 'Funds.'
  3. Click "Lightning FX/Futures account." Input the amount you wish to deposit and then click "to Margin Account."
    Click 'Lightning FX/Futures account.' Input the amount you wish to deposit and then click 'to Margin Account.'
  4. Confirm that the deposit has been reflected to your margin.
     Confirm that the deposit has been reflected to your margin.
  5. Below is an explanation of the information shown.
    YTD P&L
    This is the P&L from the beginning of the year until now.
    MTD P&L
    This is the P&L from the beginning of the month until now.
    Daily P&L
    This is the P&L from AM 0:00 (JST) today until now.
    Delta = (BTC volume + BTC-FX positions + BFT positions) x current price on the BTC spot board + the estimated JPY value of altcoins
    BTC in possession
    BTC-FX position
    BFT position
    JPY in possession
    Total Net Assets
    Total Net Assets =
    (BTC volume + BTC margin) x current price on the BTC spot board + the estimated JPY value of altcoins + JPY balance + margin deposit + profit and loss valuation

About fees

Currently, there are no fees for buying and selling on Lightning Futures.

Swap points occur separately. For more information on swap points, please refer to the Lightning Futures User Guide.

About risks