Front Month

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DEFINITION of 'Front Month'

Used in futures trading to refer to the contract month with an expiration date closest to the current date, which is often in the same month. In other words, this would be the shortest duration contract that could be purchased in the futures market. Contracts that are a month or more behind the front month contracts are referred to as back month contracts.

BREAKING DOWN 'Front Month'

Front month contracts are generally the most liquid of futures contracts, in addition to having the smallest spread between the futures price and the spot price on the underlying commodity. Use of front month contracts requires an increased level of care, since the delivery date may lapse shortly after purchase, requiring the buyer or seller to actually receive or deliver the contracted commodity. Front month contracts are often paired with back month contracts to create calendar spreads.

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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. 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 >>
  3. 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 >>
  4. What are the main risks associated with trading derivatives?

    The primary risks associated with trading derivatives are market, counterparty, liquidity and interconnection risks. Derivatives ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. How can an investor profit from a fall in the utilities sector?

    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 >>
  6. How are commodity spot prices different than futures prices?

    Commodity spot prices and futures prices are different quotes for different types of contracts. The spot price is the current ... Read Full Answer >>

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