HedgingWhat Is It, And Its Uses In Risk Management

By: Dwayne Strocen
The second of a two part article…. Before I discuss the use of hedging to off-set risk, we need to understand the role and the purpose of hedging. The history of modern futures trading begins in Chicago in the early 1800’s. Chicago is located at the base of the Great Lakes, close to the farmlands and cattle country of the U.S. Midwest making it a natural center for transportation, distribution and trading of agricultural produce. Gluts and shortages of these products caused chaotic fluctuations in price. This led to the development of a market enabling grain merchants, processors, and agriculture companies to trade in contracts to insulate them from the risk of adverse price change and enable them to hedge.

The first commodity exchange was the creation of the Chicago Board of Trade, CBOT in 1848. Since then, modern derivative products have grown to include more than the agricultural industry. Products include Stock Indices, Interest Rates, Currency, Precious Metals, Oil and Gas, Steel and a host of others.

The origins of the commodity and futures exchange was created to support hedging. The role of speculators is beneficial as they add trading volume and important volatility to what would otherwise be a small and illiquid market place. You can view a complete listing of the worlds different exchanges at: http://www.genuinecta.com/World_Exchanges_Commodities_Trading_Advisors.htm

A bona-fide hedger is someone with an actual product to buy or sell. The hedger establishes an off-setting position on the futures or commodity exchange, thereby instituting a set price for his product. Someone buying a hedge is known as being "Long" or "Taking Delivery". Someone selling a hedge is known as being "Short" or "Making Delivery". These positions known as "Contracts" are legally binding and enforced by the exchange.

Entering your trades either for speculation or hedging is done through your broker. Commodity Trading Advisor, Genuine Trading Solutions President Dwayne Strocen, states that "Commodity and Futures exchanges are distinct from Stock Exchanges, although they operate using the same principals. They are regulated by different agencies such as the Commodity Futures Trading Commission who are responsible for regulation of retail brokers in the USA as well as Commodity Trading Advisors such as us."

Now let’s view some real life examples of hedging or mitigation of risk by using exchange traded derivatives.

Example 1: A mutual fund manager has a portfolio valued at $10 million closely resembling the S&P 500 index. The Portfolio Manager believes the economy is worsening with deteriorating corporate returns. The next two to three weeks are reports of quarterly corporate earnings. Until the report exposes which companies have poor earnings, he is concerned of the results from a short term general market correction. Without the privilege of foresight, he is unsure of the magnitude the earnings figures will produce. He now has an exposure to Market Risk.

Top Searches on
Investment
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 

» More on Investment
 



Share this article :
Click to see more related articles