Delivery Month

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DEFINITION of 'Delivery Month'

A key characteristic of a futures contract that designates when the contract expires and when the underlying asset must be delivered. The exchange on the futures contract is traded will also establish a delivery location and a date within the delivery month when the delivery can take place. Not all futures contracts require physical delivery of a commodity, and many are settled in cash.


Also referred to as "contract month."

BREAKING DOWN 'Delivery Month'

On the ticker, delivery month is indicated by a letter.


January: F
February: G
March: H
April: J
May: K
June: M
July: N
August: Q
September: U
October: V
November: X
December: Z


Some commodities can be delivered in any month. Others are only delivered in certain months. For example, cocoa can only have a delivery month of March, May, July, September or December, while copper can be delivered year round. The complete ticker symbol for a futures contract will describe the commodity, the delivery month and the year. "CCZ11," for instance, indicates a cocoa contract for delivery in December 2011.

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RELATED FAQS
  1. Why do futures' prices converge upon spot prices during the delivery month?

    It's a fairly safe bet that as the delivery month of a futures contract approaches, the future's price will generally inch ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. How do futures contracts roll over?

    Traders roll over futures contracts to switch from the front month contract that is close to expiration to another contract ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. Why do companies enter into futures contracts?

    Different types of companies may enter into futures contracts for different purposes. The most common reason is to hedge ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. What does a futures contract cost?

    The value of a futures contract is derived from the cash value of the underlying asset. While a futures contract may have ... Read Full Answer >>
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    The primary risks associated with trading derivatives are market, counterparty, liquidity and interconnection risks. Derivatives ... Read Full Answer >>
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    The utilities sector exhibits a high degree of stability compared to the broader market. This makes it best-suited for buy-and-hold ... Read Full Answer >>

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