financial instrument
As defined in the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID), including:
Transferable securities (transferable security) (for example, shares in companies and other securities equivalent to shares in companies, bonds or other forms of securitised debt and any other securities giving the right to acquire or sell any such transferable securities or giving rise to a cash settlement, determined by reference to transferable securities, currencies, interest rates or yields, commodities or other indices or measures).
Units in collective investment undertakings.
Money-market instruments.
options, futures, swaps, forward rate agreements and other derivatives contracts relating to securities, currencies, interest rates or yields or other derivative instruments, financial indices of financial measures which may be settled physically or in cash.
Options, futures, swaps, and any other derivative contracts relating to commodities that can be physically settled provided that they are traded on a regulated market and/or a multilateral trading facility.
Derivative instruments for the transfer of credit risk.
Financial contracts for differences.
Options, futures, swaps, forward rate agreements and any other derivative contracts relating to climatic variables, freight rates, emission allowances or inflation rates or other official economic statistics that must be settled in cash or may be settled in cash at the option of one of the parties (otherwise than by reason of a default or other termination event), as well as any other derivative contracts relating to assets, rights, obligations, indices and measures which have the characteristics of other derivative financial instruments, having regard to whether they are traded on a regulated market or a multilateral trading facility, are cleared and settled through recognised clearing houses or are subject to regular margin calls.
Related links

Practical Law Dictionary. Glossary of UK, US and international legal terms. . 2010.

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