Glossary

1. Market order
An order filled immediately at the best price available
2. Limit order
Usually equivalent to "price." An order in which the customer sets a limit on price or other condition, as contrasted with the trading floor definition of a market order, which implies that the order should be filled as soon as possible.
3. Stop loss
Order type: Same as stop limit, but with no limit indication: when triggered, will execute like an MBF.
4. Spread
An options position established by purchasing one option and selling another option of the same class, but of a different series.
5. Lot
The term used to describe a designated number of contracts, e.g., a five-lot purchase. Also called "cars."
6. Position
A market commitment. A buyer of a futures contract is said to have a long position and, conversely, a seller of futures contracts is said to have a short position.
7. Offset
Selling if one has bought, or buying if one has sold, a futures or options on futures contract.
8. Margin
The amount of money or collateral deposited by a client with his or her broker, or by a clearing member with the Clearing House, for the purpose of insuring the broker or Clearing House against loss on open futures or options contracts.
9. Initial margin
The minimum performance bond deposit required from customers for each contract in accordance with the rules of the Exchange.
10. Margin Call
A call from a clearinghouse to a clearing member, or from a brokerage firm to a customer, to bring margin deposits up to a required minimum level.
11. First Notice Day
The first day that a notice of intent to deliver a commodity can be made by a clearinghouse to a buyer in fulfillment of a given month's futures contract.
12. Last trading day
Day on which trading ceases for the maturing (current) delivery month.
12. Delivery
The tender and receipt of an actual commodity or financial instrument in settlement of a futures contract.
13. Basis
The difference between the spot or cash price of a commodity and the futures price of the same or a related commodity. Basis is usually computed to the near future, and may represent different time periods, product forms, qualities and locations.
14. Hedge
The purchase or sale of a futures contract as a temporary substitute for a cash market transaction to be made at a later date. Usually it involves opposite positions in the cash market and futures market at the same time.
15. Settlement price
A figure determined by the closing range that is used to calculate gains and losses in futures market accounts, performance bond calls and invoice prices for deliveries.
16. Minimum price fluctuation
The smallest increment of price movement possible in trading a given contract, often referred to as a tick. The minimum unit by which the price of a commodity can fluctuate, as established by the Exchange.
17. Option
The right, but not the obligation, to sell or buy the underlying (in this case, a futures contract) at a specified price within a specified time.
18. Call
An option to buy a commodity, security or futures contract at a specified price any time between now and the expiration date of the option contract.
19. Put
An option to sell a commodity, security, or futures contract at a specified price at any time between now and the expiration of the option contract.
20. Premium
The amount agreed upon between the buyer and seller for the purchase or sale of a futures option – the buyer pays the premium and the seller receives the premium. The excess of one futures contract price over that of another or over the cash market price.

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