Commodities price chart dating to 1700

This would occur because traders typically settle their contractual obligations by offset – traders buy/sell the contracts that they sold/bought earlier.

For example, Trader A sells a contract to Trader B, who sells a contract to Trader C to offset her position, and so on.

Government price supports or other such regulation can also render trading inactive (see Carlton 1984, 245).

Futures contracts succeed or fail for many reasons, but successful contracts do share certain basic characteristics (see for example, Baer and Saxon 1949, 110-25; Hieronymus 1977, 19-22).

To understand the mechanics and merits of marking-to-market, consider that the values of the long and short positions of an existing futures contract change daily, even though futures trading is a zero-sum game – a buyer’s gain/loss equals a seller’s loss/gain.

Absent a clearinghouse, traders would interact directly, and this would introduce two problems. concerns about their counterparty’s credibility would impede trading.It trades on the New York Mercantile exchange (NYM).The contract is and debits Member S’s margin account the same amount.Commission merchants also maintain margins with clearinghouse members, who maintain them with the clearinghouse.The margin account begins as an initial lump sum deposit, or original margin.

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The clearinghouse eliminates both of these problems. If a trader defaults on a futures contract, the clearinghouse absorbs the loss.

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