Great Contract Challenge

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This contest ended Fall 2008.

MarketsWiki invites our contributor community to help develop the next great exchange contract in the futures, equities, options and OTC markets.

Exchanges historically have not had a high level of success when it comes to creating new contracts. No doubt they have experienced product developers; yet, even if their ideas are genuinely good for the marketplace, even if they try their best to expose those ideas to numerous customers before the launch, most contracts fail.

We've set out to create a bottom-up approach that will not only create the next new contract, but will allow everyone to see it, weigh in on it equally, and improve it before it ever makes it to the market. When it does, we hope that the entire industry knows what it is, how it works and how it might benefit customers before it’s ever launched. It is product development, marketing and the launch all in one.

For complete details and background of the contest, take a look at this essay written by John Lothian and Jim Kharouf.


  1. You must be a MarketsWiki contributor (i.e. you need to have a user account in order to edit pages), which means that you must be a paid subscriber to the John Lothian Newsletter or the Environmental Markets Newsletter. Visit the Signup page for details.
  2. We've created categories for futures, options, equities and OTC markets. You may contribute ideas to any or all of those categories.
  3. To create a page for a new idea, enter the name of your new contract into the "search" box. So, if you want to create a contract to trade the relationship between pineapples and cream cheese, you'd enter "Pineapple-Cream Cheese Spread." Hit "go," and the Wiki will give you a chance to create the contract. Once you create the page, click the "Contest Contract" button at the top of the screen and it will fill in the basics for you.
  4. If you see an existing contract's description and have changes or more good ideas that can improve the product, please don't directly change the contract. Instead, put your thoughts on the contract's "talk" page. (Go to that page and click the "Discussion" tab on the top of the article page.) If the original author agrees that it's a good change, then you can add it to the page.
  5. If you have a great improvement but the original author doesn't think so, you are free to create a brand new page with your own changes. We'll note the relationship to the original idea.

Deciding the Winner[edit]

We'll run this contest through Fall 2008. Near the end of the contest, we'll request votes and opinions from the financial community to judge the merits of entries in each category.

The winners will be announced at the November FIA conference November 27-29 in Chicago. The winners will be listed as the original poster of the idea, along with all others who contributed changes and additions.

What Do I Win?[edit]

We're not giving out cash or specific rewards for the winner(s); however, as a winner you will receive the following:

What Contract Ideas Currently Exist[edit]

The table below lists the current contract ideas being considered and developed. If you create a new page, the MarketsWiki team will make sure it gets listed here.

Current Contract Ideas by Category
Futures Options Equities OTC
  • Create a contract!
    (see rules above)
  • Create a contract!
    (see rules above)
  • Create a contract!
    (see rules above)