Why Do Companies Enter Futures Contracts

Companies enter futures contracts to hedge against price volatility and lock in future prices for commodities, currencies, or financial instruments. By doing so, they can mitigate risks and ensure stable cash flows, especially for industries heavily reliant on raw materials or volatile markets.

In an ever-changing global economy, businesses face multiple uncertainties, such as volatile prices of essential inputs or fluctuating exchange rates. These unpredictable factors can significantly impact a company’s profitability and stability. To minimize these risks, companies turn to futures contracts.

A futures contract is a binding agreement that obligates the parties involved to buy or sell a specific asset at a predetermined price and date in the future. By entering into these contracts, companies can safeguard against price fluctuations, ensuring stable costs for their materials or protection from adverse currency movements. This proactive approach helps them manage risk, plan budgets effectively, and maintain a competitive edge in the market. We will delve deeper into the reasons why companies choose to enter futures contracts and the benefits they provide.


Companies have various reasons for entering into futures contracts, understanding the benefits and risks associated with these agreements is crucial for a successful business strategy.

One of the primary reasons companies enter futures contracts is to hedge against price fluctuations. By locking in a future price for a commodity or financial instrument, companies can protect themselves from potential losses caused by unexpected price changes.

For example, let’s say a manufacturing company knows it will need a specific quantity of steel in three months to fulfill its production obligations. By entering into a futures contract to buy steel at a predetermined price, the company can shield itself from the risk of steel prices rising significantly in the future. This allows the company to accurately estimate its costs and ensure profitability.

Reducing Price Uncertainty

Futures contracts also help companies reduce price uncertainty. This is particularly beneficial for businesses that rely heavily on commodities or raw materials, which often experience price volatility due to factors such as geopolitical events or changes in supply and demand.

Companies also use futures contracts as part of their supply chain risk management strategy. By guaranteeing the availability and pricing of essential inputs, businesses can ensure smooth operations and avoid disruptions caused by unexpected supply chain issues.

Controlling Input Costs

For example, a food manufacturer may rely on a specific type of grain for its production. By entering into a futures contract to purchase the grain, the company can secure a consistent supply at a fixed price, reducing the risk of sudden price spikes or supply shortages. This allows the manufacturer to plan their production and pricing strategies with confidence.

Managing Production Output

Similarly, companies may use futures contracts to manage production output risks. By entering into contracts to sell their products in the future, businesses can lock in sales prices and protect themselves against potential market downturns. This ensures a predictable revenue stream and helps businesses maintain profitability even during challenging economic conditions.

In addition to risk management, companies may enter futures contracts to capitalize on speculative opportunities. Speculators aim to profit from price movements, and businesses with market insights and expertise can strategically enter into futures contracts to benefit from these price fluctuations.

Investment And Diversification

For example, an energy company might enter into futures contracts to gain exposure to the oil market. By investing in futures contracts, the company can diversify its portfolio and potentially generate additional revenue if the price of oil increases.

Locking In Favorable Prices

Moreover, companies may use futures contracts to lock in favorable prices for future purchases. If a company anticipates price increases in the future, it can secure goods or services at current prices through futures contracts, minimizing the impact of inflation and ensuring cost-efficiency.

Overall, companies enter futures contracts to hedge against price fluctuations, manage supply chain risks, and capitalize on speculative opportunities. These contracts provide stability, enhance profitability, and foster strategic decision-making, allowing businesses to thrive in a dynamic and competitive marketplace.

Frequently Asked Questions Of Why Do Companies Enter Futures Contracts

Why Do Companies Enter Into Futures Contracts?

Companies enter into futures contracts to manage price risks, hedge against volatility, secure future supply or demand, and speculate on the price movement of commodities, currencies, or financial assets.

Why Enter A Futures Contract?

Enter a futures contract to hedge against price movements, speculate on future prices, or access commodities.

Why Would A Firm Enter A Futures Contract On A Currency?

A firm enters a futures contract on a currency to hedge against exchange rate fluctuations and manage risk.


Companies enter futures contracts to hedge against price fluctuations and manage risk. This allows them to lock in prices for commodities or financial assets, protecting their bottom line. By understanding the potential benefits and drawbacks of futures contracts, businesses can make informed decisions to safeguard their financial interests.

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