CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. Between 74-89% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

Compare Futures Brokers

For our futures comparison, we found 21 brokers that are suitable and accept traders from United States of America.

We found 21 broker accounts (out of 147) that are suitable for Futures .


Spreads From

Gold N/A points See all spreads

What can you trade?

  • Forex
  • Cryptocurrencies*
  • Indices
  • Commodities
  • Stocks
  • ETFs


  • Regulated by: Financial Conduct Authority.
  • Established in 1999 HQ in United States.


  • MT4
  • MT5
  • Web Trader
  • Mobile App

Funding Methods

  • Credit cards
  • PayPal
  • Bank transfer

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79% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider

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Between 54-87% of retail CFD accounts lose money. Based on 69 brokers who display this data. *Availability subject to regulation.

The Ultimate Guide to

What is a Futures Contract?

A futures contract is a legal agreement between two trading parties to buy and sell a financial instrument or asset at a pre-agreed price, but with physical exchange of the asset and payment between the dealer and trader occurring at a future date. The essence of agreeing on a price at which an asset will be delivered in the future is used as a hedging mechanism to protect the parties to the trade from any unforeseen circumstances which could affect the price of the asset in a manner which may be unfavourable to the buyer or seller of such an asset.

You can call a futures contract a “buy now, pay and exchange later” kind of contract. Futures contracts are usually concluded on the floors of trading exchanges. There are several exchanges all over the world where various categories of futures contracts are settled, for example, the Eurex Exchange and the CME Exchange.

History of Futures Contracts

Trading of futures contracts dates back several centuries. The Dojima rice exchange, where rice futures contracts were first traded in Japan, was opened in 1697 by the Samurai. At this time, the measure of wealth in Japan was rice, and those who had lots of it were the ones who had economic control of the Japanese empire. The Samurai represented the elite class of citizens in Japan and so establishing the Dojima rice exchange where rice could be traded was a means of ensuring continuity of the system of wealth control at the time.

New futures exchanges across key trade areas began to emerge by the 19th century. The formation of the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) in 1848 ushered a new era in futures market trading. Most futures trading at the time was being done on agricultural commodities, and this was reflected in the CBOT where grains were the most traded commodity at the time the market took off. The latter half of the 19th century brought the birth of futures markets for coffee, cotton and produce, all in the United States.

Over the years, more futures trading markets have been born across the world. Today, there are futures trading markets for agricultural assets, metal assets, currencies and even bonds in Canada, UK, Singapore, New Zealand, Japan, Australia and the US. The market structure has changed tremendously too, as more assets are now traded as futures. In order to protect the integrity of the markets and the contracts traded therein, agencies were formed to provide regulatory oversight. The Commodities and Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) is the official regulatory agency for the futures markets in the US. There is a synergy between the CFTC and other regulators across the world to ensure that the futures markets remain transparent and that market confidence remains high.

Futures Contract Industry Facts

The CME Group offers the widest range of futures contracts in the world. The CME Group provides information about the leading futures and options contracts through its quarterly Leading Products Quarterly Report. The report for Q4 2016 shows the latest futures contract industry facts in terms of Average Daily Volume (ADV), percentage traded and open interest, on a quarter-on-quarter as well as a year-on-year basis.

Popular Types of Futures Contracts

What are the most popular futures contracts traded on the various futures exchanges? Traders can expect to encounter the following futures asset categories:
Currency futures:
Currencies can be traded as futures assets. These are mostly setup in order to protect the buyers and sellers involved from future currency price fluctuations. Currency price fluctuations may make a deal more expensive to execute (for buyers) or cause sellers of a product to lose money. Agreeing on a currency price to execute a deal for the future ensures the protection of both parties in case the currency fluctuation makes it less desirable to execute such deals.
Agriculture futures:
Again, the essence of setting up agricultural futures is to protect buyers and sellers of agricultural commodities from unforeseen circumstances. Weather, drought, product glut and other environmental factors can adversely affect prices of agricultural commodities. By setting up futures contracts, the price at which delivery of the commodity occurs in the future protects the buyers and sellers of such commodities from untoward events.
Energy futures
Metal futures
Stock Index futures
Interest rate futures

How to Read Futures Contract Specifications

What are contract specifications? Contract specifications can be described as the individual characteristics that each futures contract are composed of. All futures contracts have the following contract specifications:
Trading screen name for the futures asset
Trading/contract symbol
Minimum contract size
Minimum units for trading and multiples of trading units
Currency that the asset is traded in
Trading price
Settlement price
Minimum price fluctuation
Expiration date for existing contract
Contract series
Business days

The crude oil futures asset will be used to demonstrate the interpretation of the contract specifications. Please note that a futures asset may have some specifications that are unique to it.

Differences between Futures and Options

Many people get confused by the concepts of futures and options. Most assets can be traded either as futures or as options. To fully understand the differences between futures and options, the definitions of both terms need to be looked at.

Options – An options contract gives the option holder the right but not the obligation to buy or sell the underlying asset within a certain time frame. This means that the holder of the option (i.e. the option buyer) can decide to allow the option to expire worthless if this will be a favourable route to take. No delivery of the actual product is involved.

Futures – A futures contract gives the buyer the right and the obligation to purchase a specified asset, and also gives the seller the right and the obligation to sell and deliver that asset at a specific future date, unless the holder’s position is terminated before the expiration date set for the contract.

So what is the difference when trading an asset such as gold as a future or as an options asset?
Obligation: There is no obligation for an options holder to exercise the option by the expiration date. In contrast, there are obligations to both buyer and seller in a futures contract to fulfil the terms of their contract by the expiration date.
Delivery: Delivery of the asset is compulsory in a futures contract, but not so in an options contract.
Premiums: Apart from the regular commissions charged by brokers for trades in the futures and options markets, options trades require the payment of a premium, either from the dealer to the trader or from the trader to the dealer. Futures trades do not involve payment of premiums.
Contract sizes: Contract sizes are usually much larger for futures trades than for options. Therefore, the margin required for executing futures trades are much larger than for executing options trades.
How Profits are Made: Options allow the traders to make money in ways that are different from futures trades. Futures traders make money from the difference between the entry price and the expiry price of the asset. Options traders do not necessarily have to profit from the difference in prices (e.g. option sellers profit only from the premiums received).

CFDs Vs Futures: The Differences

What is the difference between a Contract-for-Difference and a Future? Several assets can be traded as CFDs and also as futures. A trader should at least know the basic differences between the two. The differences are listed here and an example is used of the crude oil asset to highlight these differences.

Delivery: CFD trading does not require the physical delivery of the asset being traded. The fact of physical delivery for futures trades has already been pointed out.
Futures contracts have less liquidity than CFDs. This is because CFD trades are usually performed with the brokers as the market makers, which ensures that there is always a counterparty for any CFD trade.
The commission structure of futures trades makes it cheaper for high volume traders to trade assets as futures contracts.
Futures contracts are specifically structured to match high-volume, institutional-style traders. As such, there are high entry barriers in terms of margin and capital requirements, which make them inaccessible to smaller retail traders. Traders with smaller capital will find CFDs more accessible in terms of capital and margin requirements.

Why Choose
For Futures? scored best in our review of the top brokers for futures , which takes into account 120+ factors across eight categories. Here are some areas where scored highly in:

  • 19 + years in business
  • Offers 300 + instruments
  • A range of platform inc. MT4, Web Trader, NinjaTrader, Tablet & Mobile apps
  • 24/7 customer service
  • Tight spreads from 1.00pips
  • Used by 0 + traders.
  • Offers demo account
  • 1 languages offers one way to tradeForex . If you wanted to trade GOLD

The two most important categories in our rating system are the cost of trading and the broker’s trust score. To calculate a broker’s trust score, we take into account a range of factors, including their regulation history, years in business, liquidity provider etc. have a AAA trust score . This is largely down to them being regulated by Financial Conduct Authority, segregating client funds, being segregating client funds, being established for over 19

Trust Score comparison
Trust Score AAA
Established in 1999
Regulated by Financial Conduct Authority
Uses tier 1 banks
Company Type Private
Segregates client funds

A Comparison of

Want to see how We’ve compared their spreads, features, and key information below.

Spread & fee comparsion

The spreads below are illustrative. For more accurate pricing information, click on the names of the brokers at the top of the table to open their websites in a new tab.
Fixed Spreads
Variable Spreads
EUR/USD Spread 1.00
GBP/USD Spread 0.9
Gold spreads from 0.3
Silver spreads from 0.61
Copper spreads from 7.0
Crude Oil spreads from 5.0
Natural gas spreads from 8.0
DAX Spread 250.0
FTSE 100 Spread 150.0
S&P500 Spread 50.0

Comparison of account & trading features
Platform MT4, Web Trader, NinjaTrader, Tablet & Mobile apps
Services Forex
Base currency options USD, GBP, EUR
Funding options Bank transfer, Cheque, DebitCard,
Micro account
ECN account