Futures / Commodities Trading Terminology "S" to "Z"

Glossary of Trading Terminology

Jump directly to a definition on this page by clicking on any of these words:
scalping | settlement price | short | speculator | spot commodity | spot price | spread | striking price | technical analysis | time value | volume of trading | writer
scalping: For floor traders, the practice of trading in and out of contracts throughout the trading day in hopes of making a series of small profits.
settlement price: The official daily closing price of a futures contract, set by the exchange for the purpose of settling margin accounts.
short: (1) The selling of an option futures contract. (2) A trader whose net position in the futures market shows an excess of open sales over open purchases (see "long").
speculator: A trader who takes an outright long or short position in the market (opposite of "hedger"). Some speculators also trade spreads.
spot commodity: (see "cash commodity".)
spot price: The price at which the spot or cash commodity is selling on the cash or spot market.
spread: Usually refers to a simultaneous purchase of a contract and sale of another. Spreads can be transacted between contracts with the same underlying commodity but different months; the same month but different commodities; or the same month and com- modity but traded on different exchanges.
striking price: In options, the price at which a futures position will be established if the buyer exercises (also called strike or exercise price).
technical analysis
In price forecasting, the use of charts and other devices to analyze price-change patterns and changes in volume and open interest to predict future market trends (opposite of fundamental analysis).
time value: In options, the value of the premium is based on the amount of time left before the contract expires and the volatility of the underlying futures contract. Time value represents that portion of the premium in excess of intrinsic value. Time value diminishes as the expiration of the option draws near and/or if the underlying futures becomes less volatile.
volume of trading
(or sales):
A simple addition of successive futures transactions (a transaction consists of a purchase and matching sale).
writer: The seller of an option who collects the premium payment from the buyer.

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