Weekly Educational Bite
Terminology and concepts of the digital asset marketplace.
What is the Notional Value of a Futures Contract?
Notional value of a futures contract is how much total value the contract theoretically controls.
Contract Size * Underlying Price = Notional Value
Bakkt ® Bitcoin (USD) Cash Settled Monthly Futures (BMC) for example has a contract size of 1 bitcoin and assuming the BMC price is $60,000.00, the notional value of the futures contract is $60,000.00.
What is the difference between Margin and Leverage?
Margin is the amount of money deposited with the broker to control a futures contract. It is determined by the futures exchange and may be adjusted by the broker to manage risk to their clients.
Leverage is the ability to use less money to theoretically control 1 futures contract compared with buying the product underlying the contract outright which amounts to the notional value of the futures contract.
To calculate how much leverage a futures contract gives, divide the notional value of the contract by the margin.
The BMC example above had a notional value of $60,000.00 and with a margin requirement of $18,000.00, is equal to approximately three times leverage on our money ($60,000.00 / $18,000.00 = 3.33).
What is a Point and a Tick?
Point is the smallest price increment that can occur on the left side of the decimal point. (Example. 90.000)
Tick is the price movement that occurs on the right side of the decimal when looking at the price of a futures contract and is the smallest possible price change measured by markets. A Point is composed of Ticks. (Example. 90.000)
Mini US Dollar Index® Futures (SDX) has a minimum price fluctuation of $0.005 representing one tick and would move from 90.000 to 90.005. It takes 200 ticks to make one point or a move from 90.000 to 91.000.