Interest Rate Futures Contracts 3


The 10-year and 5-year notes are very similar to the long bonds. The contracts are for $100,000 and quoted in fractions of par value. One tick is 1/32 of a full point, or $31.25.

However, the exchanges allow the 10-year to be traded in half-ticks, which doesn’t really make sense because the word tick is supposed to represent the minimum at which a futures contract can move. However, that’s the way it’s done.

So one half-tick is worth $15.625. Thus, you can see such quotes as 111’285, meaning that it’s at 111’28 and a half.

For the 5-note futures contracts, the standard of $100,000 per contract quoted in fractions of par value with one tick being 1/32 of a full point ($1000) is the same.

However, on the 5-note they allow quarter ticks. So the contract can move just .25/32 or $7.8125.

The two-year note contract is different, however, Its contract value is $200,000, also quoted in fractions of par. It also allows quarter points, which are therefore worth $15.625.

One apparent reason for this disparity is that the United States government issues a lot of debt with a two-year maturity, so it is commonly bought and held. Therefore, th