Delivery Month


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.

  1. Underlying

    1. In derivatives, the security that must be delivered when a ...
  2. Futures

    A financial contract obligating the buyer to purchase an asset ...
  3. Crush Spread

    A trading strategy used in the soybean futures market. A soybean ...
  4. Current Delivery

    A type of futures contract that requires the delivery of the ...
  5. Cash Settlement

    A settlement method used in certain future and option contracts ...
  6. Actuals

    The physical commodity that underlies a futures contract or is ...
Related Articles
  1. Forex Education

    Getting Started In Foreign Exchange Futures

    Learn how these futures are used for hedging and speculating, and how they are different from traditional futures.
  2. Options & Futures

    Options Basics Tutorial

    Discover the world of options, from primary concepts to how options work and why you might use them.
  3. Options & Futures

    Interpreting Volume For The Futures Market

    Learn how to read the volume reports, look at the relation to liquidity and interpret volume using open interest.
  4. Options & Futures

    Options On Futures: A World Of Potential Profit

    There's one simple hurdle in the transition from stock to futures options: learning about product specifications.
  5. Insurance

    Futures Fundamentals

    For those who are new to futures but want a solid understanding of them, this tutorial explains what futures contracts are, how they work and why investors use them.
  6. Mutual Funds & ETFs

    Top 3 Commodities Mutual Funds

    Get information about some of the most popular and best-performing mutual funds that are focused on commodity-related investments.
  7. Chart Advisor

    Agriculture Commodities Are In The Bear's Sights

    Agriculture stocks have experienced strong moves higher over recent weeks, but chart patterns on sugar, corn and wheat are suggesting the moves could be short lived.
  8. Investing News

    Glencore Shares Surge in Hong Kong

    Shares of Glencore International, a leading multinational commodities and mining company, jumped by around 15% on London Stock Exchange, after the shares had gained about 71% earlier on the Hong ...
  9. Investing Basics

    What Does Plain Vanilla Mean?

    Plain vanilla is a term used in investing to describe the most basic types of financial instruments.
  10. Investing

    Have Commodities Bottomed?

    Commodity prices have been heading lower for more than four years, being the worst performing asset class of 2015 with more losses in cyclical commodities.
  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. Can mutual funds invest in options and futures?

    Mutual funds invest in not only stocks and fixed-income securities but also options and futures. There exists a separate ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. Can mutual funds invest in commodities?

    Mutual funds can invest in commodities. In fact, mutual funds may provide a better way for investors to gain exposure to ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. 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 >>
  5. 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 >>
  6. 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 >>

You May Also Like

Hot Definitions
  1. Section 1231 Property

    A tax term relating to depreciable business property that has been held for over a year. Section 1231 property includes buildings, ...
  2. Term Deposit

    A deposit held at a financial institution that has a fixed term, and guarantees return of principal.
  3. Zero-Sum Game

    A situation in which one person’s gain is equivalent to another’s loss, so that the net change in wealth or benefit is zero. ...
  4. Capitalization Rate

    The rate of return on a real estate investment property based on the income that the property is expected to generate.
  5. Gross Profit

    A company's total revenue (equivalent to total sales) minus the cost of goods sold. Gross profit is the profit a company ...
  6. Revenue

    The amount of money that a company actually receives during a specific period, including discounts and deductions for returned ...
Trading Center
You are using adblocking software

Want access to all of Investopedia? Add us to your “whitelist”
so you'll never miss a feature!