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Flashcards in Commodity Futures Deck (17):

Physical Assets

(1) Physical assets are direct investment in tangible assets; (2) Typically included are investments in real estate, food, fiber, metals, agricultural products, etc.


Financial Assets

(1) Indirect, paper investments in businesses, (2) Represented by a proportional ownership interest in either (3) the equity or debt of the underlying business.


Futures Contract

(1) A contract that provides for the future exchange of an asset in the future (2) at a specified delivery date (3) for a specified payment amount.


Spot Price

Current price of an asset in the cash market if you were buying a commodity right now "on the spot."


Future Price

Price of a contract for future delivery


Long Position

When an investor purchases a contract for future delivery


Short Position

When an investor sells a contract for future delivery



(1) One who speculates in the futures market to earn profits; (2) speculators rarely take delivery of assets



(1) One who is not trying to speculate, but rather (2) hedge to reduce or completely offset their risk exposure to an underlying asset.


Daily Price Limit

The maximum price a futures contract may go up or down relative to the settlement price of the previous day.


Open Interest

(1) The number of futures contracts in existence on any given day. (2) A new buyer and seller would increase open interest, whereas (3) a buyer an seller closing out their position would decrease open interest



A settlement process whereby any increase or decrease in account equity is adjusted for daily changes in the price of the underlying asset.


Major Sources of Risk in Commodities

The major sources of risk are (1) business and (2) financial risk.


Commodity benefits on Portfolio Construction

(1) Commodities have low positive, or negative correlations with stocks and bonds. (2) Adding Stock reduces portfolio standard deviation. (3) Commodities typically have high correlation with inflation.


Nonspeculative Commodity Portfolio

(1) The portfolio should be long only, with no short positions; (2) it should be broadly diversified; (3) and it should not use leverage.


Commodities Benchmark limiting the concentration of Energy

(1) The DJ-AID index specifies a maximum of 33% invested in a single index; (2) This helps reduce the percentage of energy concentration that is typical in other indexes


Emerging Economics

(1) Many investors and economists believe that the emerging economies may be the growth engine for the 21st century world. (2) If correct, these economies will need massive amounts of commodities to build out their infrastructures, which will increase demand and prices.