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What is Cost of Carry

The charges of storing a physical product or retaining a financial instrument are known as the cost of carry. Interest on long holdings, local short rates, and insurance and storage charges associated with a physical item are all examples of carry costs.

Definition of Cost of Carry

Simply put, carry costs are any additional funds required to maintain a specific position. If you want to trade stocks, you must have a thorough understanding of the term. Cost of carry is a component to consider in the financial markets because it changes depending on any charges associated with keeping a given position or stock. 

Cost of carry futures, for example, can be confusing across markets. This has a significant impact on trade demand and may even provide arbitrage possibilities. When trading stocks, you may be charged a cost of carry because you are trading per share.

What is the Cost of Carry Model?

Before taking a position, every investor should carefully consider all of the potential costs. Cost of carry may not always imply a large sum of money or excessive liabilities. The degree of the financial cost is usually determined by the techniques implemented in managing the possible expenses associated with an asset of position. Depending on the context, the term cost of carry has several connotations. 

In the financial markets, for example - the costs of entering a position and maintaining it differ from the expenses of carrying it. In the commodity markets, cost of carry refers to the costs of retaining an asset, as well as storage, insurance, and other fees.

To grasp the concept of cost of carry, you must first learn about the cost of carry model. The model will assume that the arbitrage spread between the spot and futures prices effectively eliminates all pricing flaws, both clear and not-so-obvious. After all of these other factors are taken into account, the cost of carry is the only item that justifies the difference between the spot and futures prices. 

It is the expense of holding a futures position in your books, as the name implies. The assumption in the cost of carry model is that such futures contracts are kept to maturity and not squared off in the interim.

What is Cost of Carry Futures?

In the futures market of derivatives, the cost of carry is defined as a component of the computation for a stock's future cost. If the cost of carry is tied to a physically held commodity, storage rates, inventory pricing, and insurance may be included in an investor's cost of carry. Furthermore, each investor is unique, and their specific cost of carry considerations may influence their decision to invest in futures markets at different prices.

Cost of Carry Formula

The 'convenience yield' is factored into the price calculation of the futures market. This is an advantage of having the commodity in question in terms of value. The cost of carry formula is as follows:

"F =Se^(r+s-c)*t)"

Explanation of the Cost of Carry Formula:

F = it is the price of the commodity in the future.

S = it is the commodity's spot price.

e = it is the natural log base.

r = it is the rate of interest without risk.

s = it is the cost of storage that is shown as a spot price per cent.

c = it is the yield of convenience.

t = it is the time until the contract is delivered, and it is a fraction of a year.

How to Calculate Cost of Carry?

CoC is frequently used by traders to gauge the market mood. A big drop in CoC is interpreted by analysts as an indication that the underlying is about to fall. CoC of the benchmark index Nifty futures, for example, fell nearly half a fortnight ago and served as a signal of the index's subsequent correction. When the CoC for a stock's future rises, it indicates that traders are willing to pay more to keep the position and hence expect the underlying to rise. CoC is stated as a percentage of an annualized value. You could utilize the formula mentioned above to do the calculation.

What is Cost of Carry in Derivatives?

Since derivatives prices are generated from the underlying spot price, they move in lockstep with it. It could also happen differently - as changes in futures prices widen the arbitrage difference and make futures buying more appealing, driving up spot prices.

What is Cost of Carry - FAQs

Q1. What Effect Does Cost of Carry Have on Net Return?

A cost of carry investment is one that has the most potential to influence your net return, also known as net profit. As a result - the investor should be aware of any cost of carry charges that may arise while trading, as they will have a significant impact on the net profit of their investments or transactions.

Q2. What is cost of carry options?

Simply put, the cost of carry is the net cost of keeping a position. The word is used in capital markets to express the difference between the cost of a certain asset and the returns generated on it over a given period. It is the most generally used model for pricing futures contracts.

Q3. Can Cost of Carry be negative?

Yes. The cost of carry is negative when futures trade at a discount to the underlying. This happens for one of two reasons: the stock is scheduled to pay a dividend, or traders are actively implementing a reverse arbitrage strategy, which involves buying spots and selling futures. A bearish mood is indicated by a negative cost of carry.

Q4. What is the interpretation?

The value of CoC is employed as a market mood indicator, with a low CoC indicating a drop in the value of the underlying and vice versa.

Q5. Can cost of carry become a critical component in financial markets?

Yes, the cost of carry can become a critical element in a variety of financial markets. As a result, the cost of carry will be determined by the cost of holding a given position.

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