Could I legally create a website that allows for the purchase of options on collectibles – baseball cards, for example? Let's assume it's on a collectible that fluctuates in value rather than consistently depreciates. What regulation, if any, would I have to be aware of in creating this?

  • My guess is that, in the U.S., the SEC might assert authority to regulate, and you would then either have to register and comply with that agency or else tailor your market to a clearly defined exemption from SEC regulation. One key question is whether you are, by the legal definition of the phrase, "making a market in securities."
    – feetwet
    May 18 '16 at 17:44
  • Alright, thanks. I figured contacting them first is probably a good idea.
    – Wes
    May 18 '16 at 17:51
  • @feetwt the SEC has jurisdiction over options on securities - these are options on personal property.
    – Dale M
    May 19 '16 at 2:10

This would appear to be a simple application of contract law - the exchange of money for a promise (to sell at a fixed price in the future). Option contracts are only regulated if they relate to options over securities (like company shares) - not if they are over personal property (like baseball cards).

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