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A forward contract is a contract to buy and sell something at a future date. It will normally specify:
  • What is the underlying item to be bought and sold?
  • Where/how is delivery to be done?
  • What shall the price be?
  • What amount is to bough/sold?
  • Who is the seller?
  • Who is the buyer?

A straight forward contract is distinguished from a futures contract by not having any money move between the buyer and the seller as the market price of the underlying change. A margin deposit may sometimes be needed when the contract is entered, but it is not marked to market.

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