what's the difference between a FCM and Clearinghouse?

Discussion in 'Index Futures' started by bbqbbq, Aug 26, 2008.

  1. bbqbbq


    I have a hard time figuring this out:confused: And what is an IB? And how does this fit into the exchange?
  2. Truff


    An FCM - "futures commision merchant" typically is the clearing agent although there is such thing as a non clearing FCM. An IB is an "Introducing broker" which typically handles the retail clients and introduices them to the clearing companies.
  3. bbqbbq


    What does a non-clearing FCM do? basically the same as an IB, yes?
  4. Anyone clears through a bank? I saw some banks like Citi listed on CQG's site.
  5. A non clearing fcm can hold customer's deposits and excess margin, initial and maitinance margin on open positions is transferred daily to the clearing fcm. An ib is just an additional middleman and does not hold customers deposits, just a salesman adding a layer to commission structure.

    The main role of the clearing fcm is to guarantee cournter party risk on open positions of customers. In futures, postions are marked to market daily and open p/l reconciled daily between fcms. This is the role of the clearinghouse of the exhcange. This is why fcms and non clearing fcms have different capital requirements.