CHICAGO (HedgeWorld.com)âThe Chicago Board of Trade will upgrade its electronic trading platform in October. The upgrade, designed to increase speed and capacity, also means that CBOT and Euronext.liffe customers will be on the same version of LIFFE Connect for the first time, exchange officials said in a press conference Monday. As a complement to this upgrade, the CBOT will complete the implementation of its North American Trading Host, which will move the center of the electronic trading platform to Chicago from London. Also, it will expand the number of trading hours on its platform. The enhanced functions of the system include order book management, stop orders and the use of inter-commodity spreads strategies. Changes to CBOT's transaction fee schedule will coincide with the platform upgrade. The fee schedule involves three distinct account types, called levels one to three. Level one accounts (individual members trading for their own accounts) will pay US$0.05 per contract rather than $0.03 on some transactions as at present. Fees for level two accounts (non-members trading for a member's accounts, whether for individuals or firms) won't change. Fees for level three (non-members trading either futures or options accounts) will increase on some transactions from US$0.30 to $0.45 per contract. At the press conference held to announce the technology and fee changes, Bernard Dan, president and chief executive of CBOT, said that this was part of a busy period at the exchange. The board has completed a review of "expressions of interest" and has decided to proceed with its initial public offering. On that subject, Mr. Dan said that the CBOT is "officially in its quiet period." The conference was co-hosted by Mr. Dan and Bryan Durkin, CBOT's chief operating officer. Mr. Durkin said that the upgrade is a "collaborative effort that is the result of an open and ongoing dialogue with our customers." Separately, the CBOT recently announced a memorandum of understanding with the Singapore Exchange allowing the two exchanges to explore futures and options-on-futures contracts on Asian-based commodities. One of the reporters at the conference asked whether any "hardware overhaul" was planned. The executives said that there won't be any immediate hardware change, but left open the possibility of "infrastructure" improvements within the next year.