NYFE - a question

Discussion in 'Index Futures' started by trader56, Jan 17, 2004.

  1. I've been away from trading for awhile, and am hoping some of you might be able to help me with a dumb question.

    There used to be a contract called "the knife," which I'm pretty sure was the NYFE Composite Index for the U.S. stock market.
    Many people, who didn't want to trade the S & P futues, would trade this instead. It was thought to be less volitile, and less expense in terms of margin, etc.

    Can anyone tell me if this still exists, or if it is now called something else?
    If it is gone, is there something that people are now trading as a proxy or substitute for the S & P futures?

    Thanks for your time and help!
  2. saxon


    I started my career in futures trading on the floor of the NYFE back in 1982, but later moved to Chicago to trade the S&P. Even in the early days, the vast majority of volume in index futures was going to Chicago.

    The "knife" still trades (on the New York Board of Trade), but as you can see from the link below, the volume is nill. I would suggest you stick with the ES.


  3. Thanks Saxon,

    Just what is the ES?

    Any other proxies for the S & P you think are worthwhile? How about the E-mini, or any others?

  4. trader56,

    The ES IS the E-mini for the S&P. You really have been away..


  5. I started my trading career on the NYFE floor back in 1984 when the contract had a lot of volume (17,000 per day) and a lot of players, houses, and market participants involved, both retail and institutional.

    The NYFE moved over to #4 World Trade Center in 1988 and became part of the NY Board of Trade. Shortly after 1990, many of the players left (volume dried up to about 3,000 per day) and put their orders into the S&P pit. As a result, the NYFE has died a very long, slow, torturous death.

    It still exists, but there is almost ZERO volume, and as a result, ZERO LIQUIDITY. Saxon is correct when he suggests sticking with the ES.
  6. Thanks to all of you for taking time to answer my questions.

    I used to be a floor trader in the ags, but it's been about 5 years since I left. I'm interested in trying to take the experience of the floor, and trade away from the floor.

    I think the best thing to trade would have some volatility and liquidity, but not be so fast as to be expensive when wrong. The S & P has the volatility and liquidity, but i just as soon experiment on something a bit less expensive.

    Any suggestions are appreciated, and thanks once again.
  7. saxon



    If you start with only a 1-lot, the ES is not THAT dangerous. But if you would prefer something a little tamer, you might try the 5-yr Trsy Note (ZF), which trades electronically on the E-CBOT.

    good luck