Commodities can typically be traded on the futures market through futures contracts, which are short term contracts with definite expiry dates. However, commodities may also be traded indirectly through the equities market, through mutual funds, through exchange-traded funds (ETFs) or through a contract for difference CFD platform.
Leverage and smaller contract sizes are two factors that attract traders to trading futures contracts as CFDs (contracts for difference) rather than traditional trading. With a combination of smaller contracts and leverage, the initial capital requirements for traders is significantly lower.
Unlike manufacturers, most traders do not want the actual delivery of the commodity they are trading, therefore a commodities trader will usually opt to roll over the futures contract for that commodity. A commodities roll-over effectively extends the expiration date for the settlement of the contract, allowing the trader to avoid the costs associated with the settlement of an expired futures contract.
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