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AREC 412 - Agricultural Commodities Marketing

  • 3 credits
  • Online

This is a course on agricultural commodity markets in general and specifically a commodity futures and options markets course. The emphasis will be on major commercial agriculture field crops and livestock – mainly but certainly not limited to Colorado. The course will involve study of commodity price behavior. Attention will be paid to the role of futures markets as an institution in a market economy, as well as use of futures contracts and options on futures contracts in firm asset and risk management. Emphasis will be placed on the mechanics of futures and options trading, basic relationships between cash and futures markets, fundamental and technical behavior of commodity futures prices, hedging strategies, futures market regulation, and commodity futures market performance.

Course Outcomes:

  • Learn institutions unique to commodity and futures markets – how do these markets work and who are the participants.
  • Develop skills for measuring and managing market price risk in an agribusiness environment.
  • Understand how to conduct commodity market analysis using underlying economic fundamentals and using the tools from technical analysis.
  • Develop abilities to synthesize topics from prior coursework into a comprehensive understanding of markets.

There are excellent and persistent career opportunities for students with knowledge of and skills related to commodity markets. A purpose of this course is to provide students the opportunity to study and learn the skills that commodity marketing firm employers value. This is a major goal of the instructor. The instructor also recognizes that university is not only career training. Markets continue to grow and expand, and a successful, well-educated university student will recognize the entrepreneurial opportunities that understanding markets offers.


AREC 310 (Agricultural Marketing); Concurrent registration is acceptable as long as the student recognizes the needed additional effort; It is recommended that students be junior or senior at university; A 300-level marketing course and a 300-level agribusiness management course are points of departure; Basic data and statistical analysis through spreadsheets will be conducted; Therefore, skills in MS Excel, statistics, mathematics, and/or econometrics will be useful; Market data and other commodity market information will be gathered from the internet so knowledge of search engines and procedures will be useful

Textbooks and Materials

Please check the CSU Bookstore for textbook information. Textbook listings are available at the CSU Bookstore about 3 weeks prior to the start of the term.