Forward Market

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DEFINITION of 'Forward Market'

An over-the-counter marketplace that sets the price of a financial instrument or asset for future delivery. Contracts entered into in the forward market are binding on the parties involved. Forward markets are used for trading a range of instruments including currencies and interest rates, as well as assets such as commodities and securities.

BREAKING DOWN 'Forward Market'

While forward contracts, like futures contracts, may be may be used for both hedging and speculation, there are some notable differences between the two. Forward contracts can be customized to fit a customer's requirements, while futures contracts have standardized features in terms of their contract size and maturity.





The lack of standard features means that forward contracts seldom trade on exchanges, whereas futures contracts are generally exchange-listed. Since forward contracts generally tend to be large in size, the forward market is dominated by financial institutions, government bodies and large corporations.

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RELATED FAQS
  1. 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 >>
  2. How does a forward contract differ from a call option?

    Forward contracts and call options are different financial instruments that allow two parties to purchase or sell assets ... 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 >>
  5. How can I hedge my portfolio to protect from a decline in the food and beverage sector?

    The food and beverage sector exhibits greater volatility than the broader market and tends to suffer larger-than-average ... Read Full Answer >>
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    Investing style determines the best hedging techniques for the insurance sector. This sector comprises three segments, two ... Read Full Answer >>

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