For futures contracts specifying physical delivery, the delivery month is the month in which the seller must deliver, and the buyer must accept and pay for, the underlying. For contracts specifying cash settlement, the delivery month is the month of a final mark-to-market. The exact dates of acceptable delivery vary considerably and will be specified by the exchange in the contract specifications.
For most futures contracts, at any given time, one contract will typically be traded much more actively than others. This is called variously the front month or the top step contract.
Financial contracts (such as bonds, short term interest rates, foreign exchange and stock indexes) tend to expire quarterly, in March, June, September and December.
This table lists the conventional letter codes used in tickers to specify delivery month:
Month Code January F February G March H April J May K June M July N August Q September U October V November X December Z
To name a specific contract in a financial futures market, the month code will follow the contract code, and in turn be followed by the year. For example, CLZ8 is the December 2008 NYMEX crude oil contract. CL denotes crude oil (crude light), Z corresponds to the December delivery month, and 8 refers to 2008.
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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… … Investment dictionary
delivery month — A specific month in which delivery may take place under the terms of a futures contract. Also referred to as contract month. Chicago Board of Trade glossary The month during which a futures contract expires, and delivery is made on that contract … Financial and business terms
delivery month — /dəˈlɪvəri mʌnθ/ (say duh livree munth) noun in the futures market, a specified month during which actual delivery of a commodity may be made … Australian English dictionary
delivery month — /dɪ lɪv(ə)ri mʌnθ/ noun a month in a futures contract when actual delivery will take place … Dictionary of banking and finance
delivery month — The month in which the underlying of a futures contract must be handed over to the buyer. A month is specified but usually any day within that month will fulfil the contract obligations … Big dictionary of business and management
delivery month — Fin see contract month … The ultimate business dictionary
delivery month performance bond requirement — The performance bond requirements applicable to all positions in the delivery month as defined by the CME clearing house. Chicago Mercantile Exchange Glossary … Financial and business terms
current delivery month — The delivery month that typically identifies the futures contracts that expire within that month. Chicago Mercantile Exchange Glossary The most current calendar month in which a futures contract comes to maturity and becomes deliverable. Also… … Financial and business terms
deferred (delivery) month — The more distant month( s) in which futures trading is taking place, as distinguished from the nearby ( delivery) month. Chicago Board of Trade glossary … Financial and business terms
Spot Delivery Month — Used in commodity trading, this is the nearest of the months currently being traded in which a commodity could be delivered. For example, in the end of October, the spot delivery month would be November … Investment dictionary