What Are Futures?

Futures contracts or simply "Futures" are an alternative investment permitted in your self-directed IRA at STRATA. These investments are a type of derivative contract agreement (value is derived from the performance of market factors) to buy or sell a specific commodity asset or security at a set future date for a set price.

Futures are traded on futures exchanges like the CME Group and require a brokerage account that’s approved to trade futures. Your STRATA IRA can establish a trading account through a futures commission merchant (“FCM”) where you or your broker can place trades in commodities, futures, and forex. Please refer to our Futures Investment Checklist for more details.

What to Expect

  • Personal funds are not allowed - If your futures account requires additional funding (shortfall or margin call), the funds must be sent directly from your STRATA cash account. If your STRATA account does not have sufficient funds, then you will need to transfer funds from another IRA or Qualified plan to STRATA, or you may make your IRA contribution directly to STRATA (if eligible). Then you can direct STRATA to send funds directly to your futures account.
  • Managed account or self-trading allowed - You may either trade your own account, or you may designate a broker or other third party to trade futures on behalf of your STRATA account.  
  • Commodity pools are allowed - You may participate in a commodity pool, refer to our Private Equity Investment Checklist for more details about directing an investment into a commodity pool.


You may find helpful resources by visiting the websites of the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (www.cftc.gov) and the National Futures Association (www.nfa.futures.org).