One is said to hedge a risk when the action taken to reduce one’s exposure to a loss also causes one to give up of the possibility of a gain. For example, farmers who sell their future crops before the harvest at a fixed price to eliminate the risk of a low price at harvest time also give up the possibility of profiting from high prices at harvest time. So, they are hedging their exposure to the price risk of their crops.
There is a fundamental difference between insuring and hedging. When you hedge, you eliminate the risk of loss by giving up the potential for gain. When you insure, you pay a premium to eliminate the risk of loss and retain the potential for gain.
Finance is all about time and risk. It’s basically a study of how people make decisions regarding the allocation of resources over time and the handling of risks of them. Playing with it requires some very fundamental techniques and strategies, which are all indispensable if not enough for success in financial markets. And the idea of present value is one of the most important that will help you value financial assets over time thus making choices between current resources and future gains.