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Difference between speculation and hedging strategies?



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Both can be explained with reference to signing a futures contract to deliver or buy a commodity at a future date. Hedging refers to locking in a future price for the commodity in order to minimize risk. It is a form of diversification, since typically the signer does not hedge with all of the product that he or she wants to buy or sell. Speculation, on the other hand, refers to agreeing to a futures contract in order to profit by taking risks. Since not all of the speculator's portfolio may not be at risk, this activity can involve diversification.