If you are interested in trading the future markets then chances are you heard about the E-Mini index futures. These products have a lot of opportunities and they are also highly liquid. In this article we will focus on three of the most successful E-Mini indexes:

ES or the S&P 500 mini contract.
YM or the Dow Jones Industrial Average mini contract.
NQ or the NASDAQ 100 mini contract.

The three contracts above are considered to be the most successful E-Mini products that the exchanges have ever created. They are trades by just about everyone from ex Chicago floor traders to hedge funds all the way to the big banks. Some of the attraction to these products is the liquidity and low margin rates needed to control a larger part of the market. Some basic contract information about these futures are:

Trading hours start on Sunday at 7PM EST through Friday 5:15 EST. It is a 24 hour a week market.
Many brokers have a $500 or less day trading margin.
Overnight margins are for most brokers are under $5,000.
Contract month abbreviations are H, M, U, Z, and that stands for March, June, September and December.
Expiration is on the third Friday of every month.

Next : Understanding Dow Futures – Part 3

Back : Understanding Dow Futures – Part 1