How to set up forward contracts on ATB FX

Forward contracts can help businesses plan for the future by providing certainty about exchange rates. Learn how to lock in your rate for future transactions to eliminate market uncertainty and confidently predict your costs and related pricing on goods and services. Single-dated forwards are useful for confirmed future obligations for a specific amount on a specific date, while option-dated forwards are useful for flexible or recurring transaction dates for a specific total amount.

How to set up single-dated forwards

Buying example: You have an invoice in euros that you need to pay in 45 days. Using single-dated forwards, you can lock in the current exchange rate for the future payment amount so you'll know exactly how much you'll have to pay in Canadian dollars to satisfy the euro invoice.

Selling example: You get paid monthly in US dollars, but your business expenses are in Canadian dollars. To help with budgeting your expenses, you can use single-dated forwards to sell US dollars every 30 days at today's exchange rate. This ensures that you can accurately budget your US dollar income to cover your Canadian dollar operating expenses.

  1. Log in to ATB FX
    1. Since you’ve enrolled in two-factor authentication, you will be asked to verify your identity.
  2. From the Home screen, click Buy/Sell FX in the primary navigation then click FX Spot/Forward.
  3. On the Currency Trading screen (Step 1), note the selected defaults (based on your preferences).
    1. Select your funding account from the Account drop-down menu.
  4. From the Currency drop-down menu (to the right of the Buy option), select the required currency for purchase (e.g. USD - US Dollar).
    1. If you’re setting up a sell transaction, change Buy to Sell and then select from the second/lower Currency drop-down menu.
    2. Whether buying or selling, the full amount of the contract will be executed on the final maturity date.
  5. Enter the Amount of the selected currency you want to buy or sell.
  6. Select the (future) date on which you want to have the trade mature, the Tenor will default to the relevant selection (e.g. Broken Date).
    1. Alternatively, selecting the Tenor of your trade will default to a relevant date (but you can change the date as needed).
    2. The ability to book a forward depends on a credit limit being applied to your profile. Contact your relationship manager if this hasn’t been set up.
  7. Click Request Quote.
  8. Step 2 of the Currency Trading screen will display a real-time quote for your trade; you should see the exchange rate and the total cost to your account.
    1. The rate is refreshed regularly and you have a limited time to complete this step before the stream times out.
  9. Click BOOK to secure your preferred rate.
    1. Once you click BOOK, a trade is made at that rate and cannot be cancelled. Proceed to the next step or call ATB FX Team at 1-855-282-3939 to explore your options, such as reselling your funds back at market price; if outside business hours, send an email to
  10. Step 3 of the Currency Trading screen will display a confirmation of your trade.
    1. You have the option to settle the transaction now or later. If you choose later, you must settle before 3pm MT of your trade value date for USDCAD, one day before the trade value date for GBP and two days before for all other currencies (see the Transaction Details screen).
  11. Click Settlement.
  12. On the Transaction Details screen, under the Post-Trade Settlement Instructions heading:
    1. The Funding Details section will display the details of the previously selected funding account.
      • If you have multiple accounts in the source currency, you can change or add an additional funding account by clicking +Add Multiple.
    2. In the Delivery Details section, click +Add Multiple to add one more existing beneficiaries.
      • Alternatively, click +Add New to "add a new beneficiary".
  13. On the Existing Settlement Instructions screen, select one or more beneficiaries by clicking the associated checkbox on the left.
  14. Click +Add selected; these beneficiaries will then appear in the Delivery Details section of the Transaction Details screen.
  15. Leave an identifier for your beneficiary in the Purpose field, such as invoice or client number.
  16. If sending the funds to a single beneficiary, the Amount field will be populated automatically.
  17. If splitting the funds between multiple beneficiaries, enter the Amount intended for each; each amount will be shown as a percentage of the total.
    1. 100% of the total amount must be allocated, and the purpose must be populated, before the Submit button is activated.
  18. Once you’re happy with the Delivery Details, click Submit.
  19. If your profile is set up as a dual authority, you’ll need to engage another user in your company to approve before 3pm MT.
  20. You’re all done!

To learn more about the ATB FX, visit the ATB FX Help page.

The ATB Financial Markets team is here to make ATB FX work for you. Call 1-855-282-3939 or email for any help you need.


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