Question, please help. What's the difference..

Discussion in 'Index Futures' started by frank99, Aug 6, 2006.

  1. frank99


    Sorry if this is a basic question. What is the difference between:


    I'm trying to follow another thread regarding credit spread trades on SPX, however, I'm missing something.

    I thought SPX was the futures for the S&P 500. How does SPX differ from SPY?

    Hope someone can help.

    Thanks in advance.

  2. You should use google to do your basic question research and find quick answers...

    Doing independent research is a good thing to learn for a trader.

    However, I'll give you some hints.

    Two of the symbols you posted are FUTURES of the S&P 500.

    One of the symbols is an ETF (Exchange Traded Fund).

    One of the symbols is the Index Options.

  3. nitro


    SPX - cash index of the SP500 basket. It does not trade directly and it is just and index like the DOW is. You can trade options on it at the CBOE.

    /ESU6 - An actual trading contract. ES stands for mini SP futures on Globex, the U for september, and the 6 for 2006. So U6 is the expiration of contract. The ES contract is about 2.5 times the size smaller than the big pit traded contract, the SP below.

    /SPU6 - An actual trading contract. SP stands for the pit traded SP futures at the MERC floor. You already know what U6 means.

    SPY - An actual trading vehicle. It is an exchange traded fund that closely tracks the cash SPX index. It trades just like a stock but represents the value of the entire index at any given time. It's equivalent leverage to the ES contract is approximately 1/5. So that if you bought 500 shares of SPY, it is like being long 1 ES of the current front month.

  4. frank99


    Thanks for the reply Nitro. That was very helpful. I appreciate it.

    I did originally search in Google, but that left me with more questions than answers. I also searched in Investopedia, and in Elitetrader search, but maybe these questions were too basic.

    Thanks again.

  5. ============
    SPY, like DIA, is more practical in certain ways than SPX;
    SPY has real trades/real time /realistic trades going off on it.

    And SPY is basic non leveraged benchmark , like;
    ESU6 is a leveraged benchmark.