The UK’s property derivatives market saw £2.9bn of deals in the first three months of the year, taking the running total to £7.6bn. Financial Times

This is the highest level of trading since the market - the world's first for property derivatives - was launched three years ago.

Data from the Investment Property Databank suggest that the fledgling market is accelerating.

Ian Cullen, a director of IPD, said the £2.9bn traded in the first quarter of this year was equivalent to 10% of all physical trading of commercial real estate in 2006 – itself the second busiest year on record.

Typically, an investor in a property swap is either betting against or for an underlying property index. The UK’s success has in part been attributed to the strength of the IPD data, which represents a large proportion of the market. In other countries, the data are not always as reliable.