Market integrity and customer education go hand in hand for American agriculture. The CFTC traces its roots through the agricultural commodities and legislation such as the Grain Futures Act of 1922. The agency has therefore maintained since its inception in 1975 a close relationship with our nation’s farmers and ranchers. Today, the CFTC regulates dozens of agricultural derivatives contracts including the Live Cattle, Lean Hog, Cotton No. 2, and Class III Milk contracts. It is for all of these reasons that the agency’s committees of jurisdiction in Congress are the House and Senate Agriculture Committees.
America’s farmers and ranchers use the derivatives markets to manage risk against lean times and depend on the CFTC’s market oversight to effectively hedge that risk as well as for price discovery. Ensuring the integrity of these markets allows the agricultural sector continue to do what it does best—feed America and the world. That is why the CFTC is committed to providing agricultural end users pertinent information to help protect against fraud. Below are some helpful tips and resources tailored specifically to the ag community.
Do you fit into any of these scenarios?
I’m a farmer in search of a futures broker or advisor.
This worksheet offers steps you can take and interview questions to consider during your search for a new broker or advisor. Plus, warning signs to watch out for.
I have questions about my account statement and want to make sure he account activity is legitimate.
Check trade confirmations and monthly or quarterly account statements routinely to spot mistakes or signs of possible trouble. Find out what to look for and what to do if you spot something wrong.
I'm interested in trading futures or have an existing trading account and want to make sure that I protect myself against fraud.
Criminals target experienced investors to steal their savings. They’re crafty and good at what they do. Learn how to spot the tactics fraudsters use and how to check qualifications, disciplinary histories, and registrations.
My agricultural portfolio involves commodity pools, and I’d like to learn more before I invest.
Consider the pros, cons, and managers carefully. Also be sure you receive and review all mandatory disclosures.
The above resources were created by the Office of Customer Education and Outreach. Educators, organizations, or companies are invited to share these publications with their students, members or customers. Download and share copies electronically, or visit the CFTC’s Publication Orders page to place larger orders of these and other CFTC publications.
The Ag Risk + Farm Management Library
The Ag Risk & Farm Management Library helps agricultural producers and professionals quickly locate information, tools, and assistance on specific ag risk and farm management topics. The Library is a product of Extension Risk Management Education (ERME).
This nonprofit is dedicated to providing educational programs designed to strengthen women’s roles in the modern farm enterprise. Find classes or download free resources.
Center for Farm Financial Management
The University of Minnesota’s Center for Farm Financial Management develops applications and educational programs that provide farmers, educators, lenders, and other professionals resources to successfully manage farms and the financial activities related to farms and small businesses.
CME Group: Self-Study Guide to Hedging with Grain and Oilseed Futures and Options (PDF)
Futures and options on agricultural commodities have been seeing phenomenal growth in trading volume, due to increased global demand and the increased availability of electronic trading for these products. This booklet is an update of a longtime favorite among commodity market participants, first published in 1984 by the CBOT to coincide with the launch of its first agricultural options.
CME Group: Self-Study Guide to Hedging with Livestock Futures & Options (PDF)
The Self-Study Guide to Hedging with Livestock Futures and Options is an introduction to the mechanics of using futures and options to forward price livestock. The booklet presents 17 short units of study to help livestock producers and processors become comfortable with the futures markets and how to use them.
CME Institute Course Catalog
Online courses about livestock and grain marketing with futures or options, market fundamentals, economic trends and more are available free.
An online grain trading game, managed by the Center for Farm Financial Management at the University of Minnesota, featuring real-time cash, futures and options quotes for corn, soybeans and wheat.
Created by the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Farmdoc—and its sister sites Farmdoc Daily and Farmdoc Policy News—provide U.S. Corn Belt crop and livestock producers with constant access to information and expertise to better manage their farm businesses.
This USDA website provides tools and information, plus access to Farm Service Agency service centers across the United States.
This one-stop educational resource is designed to simplify and explain complex market topics. Through interactive features and rich content, the website explains the role of futures markets in everyday life and provides information on the derivatives industry as a whole.
Kansas State University’s IGP Institute provide technical, research-based training benefiting industry professionals globally and enhancing the market preference for U.S. grains and oilseeds. KSU faculty and industry professionals lead on-location workshops and distance education courses in the areas of flour milling and grain processing, grain marketing and risk management, and feed manufacturing and grain management.
USDA New Farmers
Support and resources to start farming. Plus, information for women farmers, youth, and veterans.