In 2014, traded volume of agricultural products derivatives, which include futures and options on Rosafe Soybean Index (ISR), Chicago Corn (CRN), Chicago Soybean (SOY), Soybean Crushing Condition (SOF), Soybean Export Condition (SOJ), Corn (MAI), Wheat (TRI) and Bases, reached 4 million tonnes, down 59.2 percent as compared with 2013, when 9.8 million tonnes were traded. Last year, agricultural products open interest averaged 353,572 tonnes, down 34.82 percent from 2013.

Meanwhile, futures and options on Gold and WTI Crude Oil registered a total volume of 51,285 contracts, 34,168 corresponding to the first underlying, which increased by 60.9 percent as compared with 2013, and the remaining 17,117 contracts to crude oil, down 62.9 percent from previous year. The open interest as a whole averaged 2,737 contracts, showing an annual decrease of 87.1 percent.

As regards the most traded derivatives in ROFEX in 2014, futures on Soybean Crushing Condition with delivery stood out, reaching a volume of 2.05 million tonnes (-26.1 percent from previous year) and a 51.3 percent participation in the total trading of contracts of the agricultural sector. In second place, Rosafe Soybean Index futures reached a trading volume of 614,520 tonnes, accounting for 19.47 percent of agricultural derivatives activity. Chicago soybean futures dropped to 403,345 tonnes and Chicago corn futures retreated to 219,905 tonnes. In turn, wheat contracts with delivery reached 53,370 tonnes (-60.65 percent per year), while trading over corn totaled 42,030 tonnes, down 82.31 percent from traded volume in 2013. As in last year, the months in which the bulk of soybean harvest comes in –from April to June- are the periods with the highest trading.

Despite the volume drop in most listed agricultural products, the options on Chicago Soybean and Chicago Corn, with reference on the CME –Chicago Mercantile Exchange-, more than tripled the levels traded in 2013, reaching a record of 143,430 and 77,225 tonnes, respectively.

When comparing derivatives traded volume with soybean, wheat and corn national production, a drop in the derivatives/production ratio is observed in the last two cycles, which after reaching a maximum of 60 percent in the 2011/12 cycle, it is currently around 30 percent.

Regarding the delivery of goods that took place through ROFEX, the trades settled via the underlying delivery accounted for 15.39 percent of the total activity with agricultural derivatives in this market, reaching a volume of 615,180, indicating that futures trading, as well as serving as a hedging and speculation tool, provides an effective marketing channel.

The advantages of using this alternative come from trading on an institutionalized market: transparency regarding disclosure of prices and amounts traded in real time, clear rules and compliance safety due to the presence of a guarantee system managed by Argentina Clearing S.A. (ACSA). In addition to this, the benefits of liquidity of standardized instruments such as futures and the flexibility to choose to cancel the position in advance or keep it until its maturity, with the certainty that the goods will be placed by the seller and will be received by the purchaser in a timely manner.

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