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Reexamining the maturity effect using extensive futures data


  • Daal, Elton

    (University of New Orleans)

  • Farhat, Joseph Basheer

    (Hashemite University)

  • Wei, Peihwang P.

    (University of New Orleans)


In his seminal article, Samuelson (1965) proposes the maturity effect that volatility of futures prices should increase as futures contract approaches expiration. This study provides new evidence on the maturity effect by examining a more extensive set of futures contracts over longer period than previous studies: 8451 futures contracts drawn from 74 commodities and four International exchanges, (London, Sydney, Tokyo and Winnipeg Futures), in addition to the U.S. markets over the years from 1960 to 2000. Strong support is found for the maturity effect in agricultural and energy commodities, but not for financial futures. Moreover, negative covariance between spot price and net carry cost appears to be able explain the maturity effect fairly well for commodity futures.

Suggested Citation

  • Daal, Elton & Farhat, Joseph Basheer & Wei, Peihwang P., 2003. "Reexamining the maturity effect using extensive futures data," Working Papers 2003-06, University of New Orleans, Department of Economics and Finance.
  • Handle: RePEc:uno:wpaper:2003-06

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    More about this item


    Futures prices; Volatility; Maturity effect; Samuelson Hypothesis; Futures mark;

    JEL classification:

    • C32 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Time-Series Models; Dynamic Quantile Regressions; Dynamic Treatment Effect Models; Diffusion Processes; State Space Models
    • G12 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates
    • G13 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Contingent Pricing; Futures Pricing
    • Q14 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Agricultural Finance


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