In the United States, futures trading began in the mid-1800's as a way to bring together producers and users of grains and cotton. Today, the CME Group in Chicago is the largest futures exchange in the world; its stock is listed on the New York Stock Exchange.
A futures contract is an obligation to buy or sell a specific quantity of a certain commodity or asset on a future date at an agreed upon price. Because the terms of futures contracts for each commodity or asset are standardized (i.e. same quantity, quality, delivery), they can be traded on an exchange. The only variable is the price.
Futures trading occurs on federally regulated exchanges, which facilitate the place where buyers and sellers trade as well as post-trade clearing. In futures trading, the buyer and seller create a new contract with each trade, the number of contracts that can be created is limitless.
RJO Futures offers a variety of services to let you choose which type is best for your trading plan.
Futures Trading Education & Resources
We also have a substantial Learning Center that provides our clients with a library of articles, guides, webinars, trading resources, and a trading terms glossary for those just starting out. Take a look at our Futures Market pages to help you get your feet wet and daily Futurescast to help you stay current on the markets.