Futures contracts have specific tickers or codes which carry certain information about contract's specifications. Most of the brokers fully specify the contracts by showing the ticker code, the month code and the year code.

The ticker code in grains would be C for Corn, W for Wheat and S for Soybeans. By putting Z in front of each of these tickers indicates it is electronically traded contract - ZC, ZW and ZS. The next code would be the month of expiration: F January, G February, H March, J April, K May, M June, N July, Q August, U September, V October, X November, Z December. And the number at the end is the year 2016, 2017. Thus ZWK16 contract is an electronic wheat May 2016 contract.

In July last year there an era in trading came to an end - the open outcry grain futures pits were closed for good. No matter of this fact the grain futures remain one of the least markets untouched by algo-trading and dark pools; although all trades are executed electronically, the machines have not entered that market as of yet as it happened with equities and indices and this is the last market good for day trading. I believe exactly because of that trading grains appeals to me that much.

What I like about day-trading grain futures is that while there is enough volumes and volatility to make significant profits during the day, (It is very similar to the ES-minis. In grains one quarter point of a cent move equals to $12.50 gain/loss.) on the other hand, the grain markets are not that noisy as indices and they tend to trend much more often; if a trend is established intraday, it continues; it is easier to identify and trade breakouts of support/resistance lines.

The other appealing feature of grain futures markets would be the trading hours. It has very distinct trading hours which is not observed in indices nowadays which with extended hours could be traded 24/5. I found for myself that I prefer to have fixed trading hours. The grain futures trading begins at 8:30 a.m. and the market closes at 1:15 p.m. CDT at Chicago Board of Trade.

Jumping from the ES-minis to grains as in my case at first could leave wrong impression of a slower market but after giving it a try, I found in that slower pace the charm of it. With that less noise and unnecessary hectic moves comes less stress and pressure. It frees the mind from constant monitoring the market and gives the ability to make the right set-up and follow all the way from entry to exit.

HKG33 2016/01/13 10:48 PM GMT 0 comments Tweet

Hang Seng Indexes Company Limited (Hang Seng Indexes), a wholly -owned subsidiary of Hang Seng Bank, was established in 1984 and is Hong Kong's leading index compiler covering Hong Kong and mainland China markets.
Hang Seng Indexes calculates and manages the Hang Seng Family of Indexes. Starting in 1969 with the creation of the Hang Seng Index, now widely recognised as the barometer of the Hong Kong stock market, Hang Seng Indexes has been at the forefront of the market, developing numerous market measures to help investors make their investment decisions.
Indexes in the Hang Seng Family of Indexes are grouped into five categories - Flagship Indexes, Benchmark Indexes, Thematic Indexes, Strategy Indexes and Bond Indexes - then classified as Hong Kong-listed, Cross-market or Mainland-listed according to where their constituents are listed.

Currently, the Hang Seng Family of Indexes comprises over 400 real-time and daily indexes. Going forward, Hang Seng Indexes will continue to broaden its index series to meet the widening spectrum of investor demand for index investment solutions.

Mini DAX Futures 2015/10/05 9:16 PM GMT 0 comments Tweet

Eurex Exchange will launch the Mini DAX Futures contract on 28 October 2015 in addition to the existing DAX Futures (FDAX). Its contract value is one fifth of the DAX Futures.

CBOE web site offers quite many and good tools for futures traders. Apart from quotes, news and education resources, there are trading simulators which could be used unlimited time with a free registration on the web site. As a novice futures trader, I've been demo-testing some of the futures brokers platforms; however they give only 14-day trial which is not enough and need to register again with a new email, while losing your previous history and so on. That is why, for educational purposes CBOE.com simulation trading tools are quite good. I've been using those resources for a couple of years while learning stock trading, options on stocks and now grain futures trading.

Currently, I am using a tool called Virtual Trade. Although, it is very simplified and it will not show in full depth especially for a day trader every aspect of day trading; it is good for a start understanding futures trading basics and specifications. It has no charting; however I am using other charting websites while placing/closing orders.  On the other hand, it is quite good for following and keeping a track of your trades. 

Day-trading setup 2015/06/01 3:03 PM GMT 0 comments Tweet

Ichimoku cloud - trend
Parabolic SAR - trend
Stochastic RSI - looking for cross as for trend reversal where to exit - take profit/loss

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