Introduction to Derivatives Course Overview

This introductory course on the topic of derivatives covers the fundamental knowledge you need to know about derivatives. You will learn to differentiate between forward, futures, options, and swaps contracts. You will also work on practical examples in Excel to calculate the profits/losses for each type of contracts. By the end of this course, you will have the essential knowledge about derivative contracts required to proceed to more advanced topics, such as derivatives pricing and trading.

Why Take This Introduction to Derivatives Course

This course covers the definition, purpose, and components of each of the four main types of derivatives. You'll look at real world examples of derivatives on Bloomberg terminal. Additionally, you'll work on example calculations in Excel to determine the profits/ losses generated from various types of derivatives. Upon completing this course, you should be comfortable explaining the differences between the types of derivatives and how they can be used for hedging and speculating purposes.

Major topics covered in this course include:

  • Characteristics of derivative contracts
  • Over-the-counter vs. exchange-traded
  • Forward contracts
  • Futures contracts
  • Initial and maintenance margins
  • Call and put options
  • Moneyness (in-the-money, at-the-money, out-of-the-money)
  • Swap contracts

Who Should Take This Course

This Introduction to Derivatives course is perfect for beginners or anyone who would like to build up their understanding about the capital markets. This course is designed to equip anyone who desire to begin a career in investment banking, sales and trading, treasury, or other areas of finance with the fundamental knowledge on derivatives.

About the Capital Markets & Securities Analyst (CMSA)™ Program

This Introduction to Derivatives course is part of CFI's upcoming Capital Markets & Securities Analyst (CMSA)™ Program. This program will cover all the basic, intermediate and advanced level topics about investment banking, sales and trading, and asset management. This program will teach you the trading strategies used in the finance and capital markets industry. It is ideal for students who want to learn how to trade different asset classes. 

Students can sign up for updates and reserve a spot in the Capital Markets & Securities Analyst (CMSA)™ Program on the student dashboard.

Introduction to Derivatives

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Approx 2.5 hrs to complete


From $797.00
Full Immersion Capital Markets & Securities Analyst (CMSA)™
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Self-Study Capital Markets & Securities Analyst (CMSA)™
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What Our Students Say

Make it more simpler
As its an introduction you should make it more simpler and explain all the terms like strike price, spot price, LIBOR, MIBOR and then go to concepts.
Kishore Srinivasan
Introduction to Derivatives
Nice introduction to derivatives.
Anant Sureka
Excellent Course
superb delivery, i would suggest to improve the swap portion calculation a little bit
Interesting and effective way to learn Derivatives
Such a wonderful way to learn and improve my concepts which is described by you its effective and very effective.
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Marta Raimundi
the question is about futures and forward and the answers are about options.
Siddharth Jain
This is a wonderful course to begin understanding of Derivatives and analogies used. Simple to the point and easy to understand. Thanks, I enjoyed the course and developed basic understanding.
Bilkis Lawal-Ndalolo. (CNA)
this is lovely, derivatives made easy
Mohammad Ali Rashid
It was exciting and encouraging to follow the lecturer and apply the formulas in the relevant excel sheet. Such interactive sessions should be more often.
Hardeep Singh Dugh
Fantastic module. I would like to see a clearer example of valuing a future in MS Excel rather than the margin. Still, this is useful because you rarely get examples for margins.
Sreeraj G. Pai
Its a good course designed for students to get an introduction on stock market basics of derivatives and futures trading. Wishing all the best to CFI Team. - Sreeraj G Pai

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CMSA Certificate

Capital Markets & Securities Analyst (CMSA)™ Program — Launching July 2020

The Capital Markets & Securities Analyst (CMSA)™ program will teach you the many asset classes, trading strategies, and procedures used in the capital markets. It is ideal for any student who wants to work in capital markets, whether on the buy-side or the sell-side. This program will give you the experience to make investment decisions and utilize appropriate trading strategies for different scenarios.


From $797.00
Full Immersion Capital Markets & Securities Analyst (CMSA)™
Buy Now
From $447.00
Self-Study Capital Markets & Securities Analyst (CMSA)™
Buy Now