Commodities can be cash commodities, or actual materials, like gold, copper, pork or wheat. A futures contract is called a contract because it requires physical delivery at a specific date in the future, and the buyer has to accept unless the futures contract is sold before it’s due (expired).
Buyers and sellers of futures contracts agree with the sellers on a fixed price to purchase a commodity at the delivery date. As time goes on, the price of the futures contract fluctuates, due to different expectations of what the price should be. Futures charts are used to track these price changes and speculative traders can profit or lose on these movements.