What are Dated Futures?

Dated Futures

Dated futures are contracts that bind a buyer and a seller to exchange an asset at a future point in time for a certain price. The change in profit and loss for each side of the contract moves with the underlying price the contract tracks - this is called marking the contract to market.
Here are the differences and similarities between dated futures and perpetual futures:

Differences

  • The concept of funding rates do not exist in dated futures
  • Instead of being able to indefinitely hold a perp futures position open, a dated futures position via cypher is (at least initially) financially settled at expiration
  • In the event that a trader would like to keep a futures position open longer than the time the contract expires, they can ‘roll’ their position - i.e. close the existing position prior to expiration and open the same position on a later dated futures contract.

Similarities

  • Both contracts offer the option for margin
  • Both contracts derive their price from the underlying price of an asset