For me, CL works the same as any futures' contact that I trade. As fore mentioned, volume takes priority. With Danials Trading: DTPro, there is a button to roll forward and roll backward to the next tradeable contract month. In a second, you can either roll to check volume or add a contract and follow both as desired. I have been very satisfied with all the service at Danials Trading so far and I have no reason to think anything will change. I especially like the charts.
Hope this might help someone.
PS I can't capture the pull down menu, as it disappears each time I hit the capture button. Otherwise I would post it.
if someone have problems with charts on NT with cl 03-13.
that help you:
1. open instrument manager
2. doubleclick on cl
3. in "instrument Editor" go to Misc and scroll down to
4. Contract months
5. over there (click "...") change the date from contract 03-13 from 21.Jan. to 18. Jan.
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The rollover dates for index futures are pretty simple to determine. Unlike for CL there are "official" rollover dates, which are used by everybody.
Index futures generally expire on the 3rd Friday in March, June, September and December.
The rollover date is always 8 calendar days prior to expiry.
This means that index futures are mostly rolled on the 2nd Thursday of those months. *)
AFAIK there are no exceptions, as there are no public holidays that would fall on a Thursday in the beginning of the four months mentioned above.
*) This statement was just meant to produce a little bit of confusion. In case that the 1st day of the month is a Friday, the day 8 calendar days prior to expiry would be the 1st Thursday of the month and not the 2nd Thursday.
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It depends if you like to trade with the high volume, wait until the volume moves from the near to next exp date. If you trade volatility then you may wait until a little closer. This also depends on the time horizon of your trading.
For intra-day trading trade with the contract that has the most volume would be my recommendation for you.
Note you can also get this information of the exchange website for the particular contract. I've found those have a wealth of knowledge if you're just starting out and well worth a read to get clued up.