# Cash and Carry Arbitrage

#### Nilesh Jain

08 May 2017

New Page 1

Arbitrage: Arbitrage is the process of simultaneous buy and sale of shares in order to profit from difference in the price of underlying assets. It is the process of exploiting risk free return which arises due to price differences. Arbitrage opportunity exists because of market inefficiencies.

Cash And Carry: Cash and Carry arbitrage is a combination of long position in underlying assets and short position in underlying futures. Cash and carry arbitrage occurs when market is in "Contango", which means the future prices of an underlying asset are higher than the current spot price. To initiate cash and carry arbitrage, the difference between spot price and future price should be reasonably high enough to cover transaction cost, financing cost as well as to earn profit. As expiration date approaches nearby, prices of spot and future converge and liquidation of position can be done at that time.

In order to exploit the risk free return, the arbitrageur/ trader will have to carry the asset until the expiration date of future contract. Therefore, this strategy would be profitable only if the cash flow from future at expiration exceeds the acquisition cost and carrying cost on long asset position.

Let’s try to understand with the help of example of DHFL.

 Cash market price (as on 25th April 2017) (S) Rs 422 June Futures (Expiry on 29th June 2017) (F) Rs 430 Contract size 3000 Fair value is measured by the formula F= S*(1+R)^n Rate of Interest 9% (p.a.) Time to expiry (n) 65 days Amount borrowed Rs 12,66,000 (422*3000) Cost of Borrowing {0.09*(65/365)} 1.6% Basis Future price-spot price

Expected future price (F) = 422*(1+9%) ^(65/365)

Therefore, in above case F= 428.53

Current future price= 430

Hence, we can see that there is an arbitrage opportunity.

Risk free Arbitrage = Rs 1.47 (430-428.53)

To take the advantage of this mis-pricing, an arbitrageur/ trader may borrow Rs 12,66,000 at an interest rate of 9% p.a. and buy 3000 shares of DHFL in cash market at Rs 422 and sell 1 lot of DHFL Futures contract at Rs 430.

Cost of borrowing in Rs [(1266000)*(9%*(65/365))]= 20,291

Gains from price difference between futures and spot= Rs 24,000

This would result in to net arbitrage opportunity of Rs 24,000-20291= Rs 3,709

Scenario analysis:

Case 1: DHFL rises to 435, at expiry

Profit on underlying (cash) = (435-422)*3000= Rs 39,000

Loss on futures = (435-430)*3000= (Rs 15,000)

Gross Gain on Arbitrage= Rs 24,000

Cost of borrowing: Rs 20,291

Net gain from arbitrage: Rs.3,709.

Case 2: DHFL falls to 415, at expiry

Loss on underlying (cash) = (422-415)*3000= (Rs 21,000)

Profit on Futures= (430-415)*3000= Rs 45,000

Gross Gain on Arbitrage= Rs 24,000

Cost of borrowing: Rs 20,291

Net gain from arbitrage: Rs.3,709.

To round up, in any cash and carry arbitrage, the moment you lock in your position, your profit is fixed depending upon the arbitrage opportunity. This is also called risk free arbitrage because your profit is secured irrespective of underlying price movement.

Whenever futures are trading at a substantial discount to spot, a reverse cash and carry arbitrage opportunity arises.

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Why to Choose Mutual Funds Instead of Directly Investing Into Equities?

Whether to invest in equities or mutual funds is a question that has plagued every investor. As someone who needs the best value for his/her investment should you invest in equity directly or via mutual funds?

Let’s start by first understanding what these two terms ‘equities’ and ‘mutual funds’ stand for-

Equities- Equities generally represent ownership of a company. If you own any equity in a company, you are a part owner of the said company (depending on how much equity you own).

Mutual Funds – It is an investment scheme which is professionally managed by an asset management company. It pools together the resources of a group of people and invests their money in equities, debentures, bonds and other securities.

Why choose mutual funds over equities?

For people who’ve never invested in either stocks or mutual funds, it is hard to know which is better and where to start. Broadly speaking, if you are a novice investor, mutual funds are not only less risky but also way easier to manage. Here are some ways in which investing in mutual funds is beneficial as opposed to investing in equities -

Diversification

Mutual funds provide more diversification as compared to an individual equity stock. When you invest in equity, you are investing in a single company which has its inherent risk. For example, if you invest Rs.20,000 in buying equities of one company, you could face a total loss if that particular company performs poorly in the market.

If you invest the same amount in mutual funds, it will be invested in different kinds of stocks and financial instruments, high-risk and low-risk both, so you might not face total loss even if one company does poorly.

Scale of Investment and Lower Costs

For an individual investor buying and selling stocks is a difficult task due to its high price. Thus, any gains made from stock appreciation are nullified if the overall trading costs are considered. Comparatively with mutual funds, as the money is pooled from a large number of investors, the cost per individual is lowered.

Another advantage of mutual funds is that you don’t need to invest large sums of money. Buying equities for a profitable venture needs huge amounts of money, a minimum of few lakhs. With mutual funds, you can start with Rs.1000 and earn profits on that as well.

Convenience

Keeping an eye on the markets everyday is a time-consuming business, especially if you are investing as a side gig. There are people who spend their lives studying the market and still end up sustaining heavy losses. Though investing in mutual funds does not guarantee high returns, it is stress-free and needs less work as compared to investing in equities.

To sum it up

It is important to remember that mutual funds have their own disadvantages as well. Thus, as with any financial decision, educating yourself and understanding the suitability of all the available options is the ideal way to invest.

# Cash and Carry Arbitrage

#### Nilesh Jain

08 May 2017

New Page 1

Arbitrage: Arbitrage is the process of simultaneous buy and sale of shares in order to profit from difference in the price of underlying assets. It is the process of exploiting risk free return which arises due to price differences. Arbitrage opportunity exists because of market inefficiencies.

Cash And Carry: Cash and Carry arbitrage is a combination of long position in underlying assets and short position in underlying futures. Cash and carry arbitrage occurs when market is in "Contango", which means the future prices of an underlying asset are higher than the current spot price. To initiate cash and carry arbitrage, the difference between spot price and future price should be reasonably high enough to cover transaction cost, financing cost as well as to earn profit. As expiration date approaches nearby, prices of spot and future converge and liquidation of position can be done at that time.

In order to exploit the risk free return, the arbitrageur/ trader will have to carry the asset until the expiration date of future contract. Therefore, this strategy would be profitable only if the cash flow from future at expiration exceeds the acquisition cost and carrying cost on long asset position.

Let’s try to understand with the help of example of DHFL.

 Cash market price (as on 25th April 2017) (S) Rs 422 June Futures (Expiry on 29th June 2017) (F) Rs 430 Contract size 3000 Fair value is measured by the formula F= S*(1+R)^n Rate of Interest 9% (p.a.) Time to expiry (n) 65 days Amount borrowed Rs 12,66,000 (422*3000) Cost of Borrowing {0.09*(65/365)} 1.6% Basis Future price-spot price

Expected future price (F) = 422*(1+9%) ^(65/365)

Therefore, in above case F= 428.53

Current future price= 430

Hence, we can see that there is an arbitrage opportunity.

Risk free Arbitrage = Rs 1.47 (430-428.53)

To take the advantage of this mis-pricing, an arbitrageur/ trader may borrow Rs 12,66,000 at an interest rate of 9% p.a. and buy 3000 shares of DHFL in cash market at Rs 422 and sell 1 lot of DHFL Futures contract at Rs 430.

Cost of borrowing in Rs [(1266000)*(9%*(65/365))]= 20,291

Gains from price difference between futures and spot= Rs 24,000

This would result in to net arbitrage opportunity of Rs 24,000-20291= Rs 3,709

Scenario analysis:

Case 1: DHFL rises to 435, at expiry

Profit on underlying (cash) = (435-422)*3000= Rs 39,000

Loss on futures = (435-430)*3000= (Rs 15,000)

Gross Gain on Arbitrage= Rs 24,000

Cost of borrowing: Rs 20,291

Net gain from arbitrage: Rs.3,709.

Case 2: DHFL falls to 415, at expiry

Loss on underlying (cash) = (422-415)*3000= (Rs 21,000)

Profit on Futures= (430-415)*3000= Rs 45,000

Gross Gain on Arbitrage= Rs 24,000

Cost of borrowing: Rs 20,291

Net gain from arbitrage: Rs.3,709.

To round up, in any cash and carry arbitrage, the moment you lock in your position, your profit is fixed depending upon the arbitrage opportunity. This is also called risk free arbitrage because your profit is secured irrespective of underlying price movement.

Whenever futures are trading at a substantial discount to spot, a reverse cash and carry arbitrage opportunity arises.

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