Lesson Overview

Backwardation/Contango

Contango is when the futures price is above the expected future spot price. Because the futures price must converge on the expected future spot price, contango implies that futures prices are falling over time as new information brings them into line with the expected future spot price. Backwardation is when the futures price is below the expected future spot price. This is desirable for speculators who are "net long" in their positions: they want the futures price to increase. So, backwardation is when the futures prices are increasing.

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