Browsing: Investing in Commodities

Commodity Investing for Diversification
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Investing in Commodities without Futures
Commodity Exposure through Futures Contracts
Commodity Futures Indices
Commodity Risks and Returns

Investing in Commodities

AIMA and SGPS on Managed Futures and CTAs

Sep 28th, 2017 | Filed under: Algorithmic and high-frequency trading, Allocating to A.I., Business News, Commodities, CTA, Institutional Asset Management, Investing in Commodities, Macro and Managed Futures Funds, Newly Added, The A.I. Industry

The Alternative Investment Management Association and Societe Generale Prime Services have together put out a white paper about managed futures funds and the commodity trading advisers who manage them. A key themes of the paper is that managed futures strategies aren’t as risky as are typical investments in equity markets.Read More


Barnes on Swaps Transparency under  MiFID II

Sep 19th, 2017 | Filed under: Commodities, Investing in Commodities, Newly Added, Operations, Risk Management & Operations, Structured Products

A recent blog in the TABB Forum, by Chris Barnes of Clarus Financial Technology, looks at recent developments in the realm of MiFID, and looks forward. The UK’s Financial Conduct Authority in August of this year authorized certain Approved Publication Arrangements (APAs) for reporting under MiFID II.  The authorization ofRead More


Below the Black: A Review of Risk Reduction Strategies

Sep 13th, 2017 | Filed under: Commodities, Commodities, Hedge Fund Strategies, Hedge Funds, Investing in Commodities, Macro and Managed Futures Funds, Newly Added, Risk management, Risk Management & Operations, Risk Management Strategies & Processes, Risk Metrics and Measurement

Excerpted from the Alternative Investment Analyst Review, Volume 1, Issue 4 The Alternative Investment Analyst Review is the official publication of the CAIA Association. Access to the most current issue is an exclusive benefit of CAIA Membership while archived issues are available to the public in the Perspectives section atRead More


High-Frequency Trading and Spoofing   

Aug 31st, 2017 | Filed under: Algorithmic and high-frequency trading, Business News, Commodities, Investing in Commodities, Newly Added, Risk Management & Operations

Six years ago Michael Coscia placed orders through the CME Group’s Globex platform via a trading algorithm that amounted to “spoofing.” He placed both large and small orders in the copper market, for example, with the large orders (cancelled within milliseconds) designed to create the illusion of market movement inRead More


Til and Heckinger on Commodity Debacles, Part I

Aug 3rd, 2017 | Filed under: Commodities, Commodities, Commodities: Examples, Energy, Investing in Commodities, Newly Added

A new paper available at SSRN looks at two infamous commodity industry melt-downs: Amaranth and MF Global. It offers a diagnosis of each. Hilary Till, of the EDHEC – Risk Institute, and Richard Heckinger, of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, share the by-line. They acknowledge research assistance from KatherineRead More


How Do They Get Those Non-Correlated Returns?

May 30th, 2017 | Filed under: Commodities, Due Diligence Process, Investing in Commodities, Newly Added, Risk Management & Operations

In a recent paper Mark Shore, of Shore Capital Management, has discussed overlaying of strategies in managed futures, saying that it is something he covers in his course on managed futures at DePaul, but that in general it “is not discussed as much as it should be.” Behind that question,Read More


Broad Commodities: Value, Inflation, Implementation

May 29th, 2017 | Filed under: Commodities, ETFs, Investing in Commodities, Newly Added

ETF Securities (US) LLC, a New York-based asset manager and manufacturer of ETP’s (Exchange Traded Products),” has issued a white paper written by its Director, Investment Strategy, (Maxwell Gold), on “broad commodities,” that is, on the use of a broad basket of commodities, as a way of allowing an investor’sRead More


The Return Characteristics of Gold Mining Stocks

Jan 3rd, 2017 | Filed under: Commodities, Commodities: Examples, Equity-linked Structured Products, Gold, Investing in Commodities, Newly Added, Structured Products

Two Maryland-based scholars have reviewed the evidence of the performance of gold mining stocks. The title of their article, which appears in the Alternative Investment Analyst Review, November 2016, puts the central question bluntly: are such stocks “more like gold or like stocks”? Let’s get the answer to that queryRead More


Dakota Access and the Army Corps of Engineers: An Odd Mistake?

Nov 13th, 2016 | Filed under: Commodities, Commodities, Commodities: Examples, Infrastructure, Newly Added, oil, Operationally Intensive Real Assets

On November 7, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers put out a statement that said that the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) had agreed to halt its controversial ongoing construction in North Dakota. The following day, which happens to have been Election Day, [so non-election news went largely uncovered], the ownersRead More


Massad: Where the U.S. and the World Stand on Margins & Cap Requirements

Oct 27th, 2016 | Filed under: Commodities, Finance & Economics, Forex, Investing in Commodities, Newly Added, The Global Economy & Currencies

The chair of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, Timothy Massad, addressed the Outlook Conference of the Managed Funds Association on October 21, and spoke about the global implementation of uncleared margin rules, which he called a critical component of “the new regulatory framework for swaps trading that the leaders ofRead More


On Aluminum and Other Metals: A Thought on Physicality 

Sep 13th, 2016 | Filed under: Business News, Commodities, Commodities: Examples, Finance & Economics, Hard metals, Investing in Commodities, Newly Added

Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing (HKEx), the company that bought the London Metal Exchange four years ago, has further expansion plans. At a recent event on the commodity markets of East Asia, Charles Li, the CEO of HKEx, spoke on this point. Li wants to create a physical metals tradingRead More


Eurekahedge: Redemptions Exceeding New Investment for HFs Worldwide

Sep 5th, 2016 | Filed under: Commodities, Commodities, Commodities: Examples, Energy, Hard metals, Hedge Funds, Newly Added, Relative Value Hedge Funds

Hedge funds have now seen three consecutive months in which redemptions have exceeded new investment, for a net outflow. The net outflow for July alone was $5.7 billion. Fortunately, July also saw performance based gains of $10.5 billion, so the total assets under management grew slightly. The table below adaptedRead More


The Shale/Fracking Revolution: 1998 to 2011

Aug 23rd, 2016 | Filed under: Commodities, Commodities, Commodities: Examples, Investing in Commodities, Newly Added, oil

A critical revolution in the crude oil and natural gas markets began 18 years ago. Gary Sernovitz, who has given the world his thoughts on this revolution in the new book The Green and the Black, has had some convenient seats whence to observe, most recently as a managing directorRead More


Headline vs. Core Inflation: We Shouldn’t Have Laughed

Aug 4th, 2016 | Filed under: Commodities, Hedge Funds, Investing in Commodities, Newly Added, Structure of the Hedge Funds Industry

I’m old enough to remember the 1970s, and to remember the economic debates in the United States at the time concerning the inflation of that era. The U.S. left the Bretton Woods system near the start of the decade, thus ushering the “free float” of currencies against one another inRead More


Volatility Spillover Effects: India, Korea, China

Jul 21st, 2016 | Filed under: Commodities, Currencies, Finance & Economics, Investing in Commodities, Newly Added, The Global Economy & Currencies

Last year, two scholars writing in the Journal of Alternative Investments looked at the volatility spillover effects in the Chinese stock index futures and spot markets.  The question for them was whether there is spillover from spot markets into futures markets and back. I propose to give you their answer,Read More


Factor-Based Asset Allocation

Jun 19th, 2016 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Alpha & Beta, Asset allocation, Asset Allocation Models, Commodities, Investing in Commodities, Newly Added, Other Topics in A.I., Smart Beta

A paper by Xiaowei Kang and Daniel Ung, published in June 2014, remains timely because risk parity and related approaches remain the center of controversy and some confusion. The Kang & Ung paper looked at three approaches to risk factor based portfolio construction, studying specifically the practical aspects of theRead More


A Review of the Commodity Index/Global Hunger Controversy

May 24th, 2016 | Filed under: CAPM / Alpha Theory, Commodities, Finance & Economics, Financial Economics Theory, Investing in Commodities, Newly Added

The consensus in market scholarship seems to be not only that “still waters run deep” but that deep waters run still. The greater the depth of volume in a commodity, the lesser the volatility of that commodity’s price. (This of course requires the usual “other things being equal” caveat.) ThisRead More


Risk Management & the Trouble with Capacity-Driven Decisions

Apr 28th, 2016 | Filed under: Commodities, Investing in Commodities, Newly Added, Risk management, Risk Management & Operations, Risk Management Strategies & Processes

A recent CAIA member contribution by Kathryn Kaminski, director of investment strategies at Campbell & Co., discusses the quantification of CTA risk management.  It is worth a look, not least because it amounts to a warning about how underperformance can result for the re-jiggering of allocation for capacity constraints. KaminskiRead More


2016 Allocator Trends Report: Consensus and Dissension

Apr 7th, 2016 | Filed under: Commodities, Commodities, Investing in Commodities, Newly Added

Context Summits has published a detailed report on the views of those who allocate money into hedge funds. Almost everybody they talked to is in on the act. Ninety-six percent of investors expect to allocate to two or more hedge funds in 2016.  A majority (57%) were prepared to investRead More


Proposed Reg AT: Comments Pile Up at the CFTC

Mar 22nd, 2016 | Filed under: Commodities, Commodities, Commodities: Examples, Energy, Newly Added, oil, Regulatory Environment, The A.I. Industry

The CFTC received a last-minute pile-up of comments on proposed rule 80 FR 78824, on automated trading. The commenters generally are not in a mood to pat the agency on its intangible back and congratulate it on a job well done. Quite the contrary. The notice of proposed rule-making (NPRM)Read More


FCStone Financial on Grains and Volatility

Mar 10th, 2016 | Filed under: Commodities, Commodities, Commodities: Examples, Finance & Economics, Forex, Investing in Commodities, Newly Added, The Global Economy & Currencies

A new white paper written by Arlan Suderman, chief commodities economist for INTL FCStone Financial, discusses the consequence of the strong dollar of the last two years on the volatility of grain prices, focusing especially on corn. Before this period, there was the global financial crisis, and the “quantitative easing”Read More


When an allocator calls: Best Practices for a CTA’s back office

Mar 9th, 2016 | Filed under: Commodities, CTA, Hedge Funds, Investing in Commodities, Macro and Managed Futures Funds, Newly Added, The A.I. Industry

By Dana Comolli, president, DMAXX LLC Every trader who has tried to raise money knows the drill from investors: yes we want to know about your performance, but also, explain in detail your back office (infrastructure, organization). Most allocators come with pages of checklists and expect the manager to beRead More


Gold Markets Get a Leap Day Surprise from India

Mar 8th, 2016 | Filed under: Commodities, Commodities: Examples, Gold, Hard metals, Investing in Commodities, Newly Added

According to the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s Commitment of Trader’s Report, released Friday, February 26, speculators in gold recently increased their long position by 30,350 contracts.Read More


More about Arch Coal and the Dusty Trail Ahead

Jan 24th, 2016 | Filed under: Commodities, Commodities, Commodities: Examples, Energy, Investing in Commodities, Newly Added, Other Topics in A.I., Socially responsible investing, SRI and Clean Energy

I wrote here last week about the demise of Arch Coal.  I was reminded of the incompleteness of my treatment there by the commenters on that piece, and I’ve been reminded again by subsequent developments. More then: in December 2013 Arch made a tender offer for its $600 million ofRead More


Arch Coal: Another One Bites the Coal Dust.

Jan 13th, 2016 | Filed under: Alternative energy, Commodities, Commodities, Commodities: Examples, Energy, Investing in Commodities, Newly Added, Other Topics in A.I., SRI and Clean Energy

Arch Coal, one of the biggest coal companies in The United States, entered Chapter 11 Monday morning, Jan 11. A prominent law firm, Davis Polk & Wardwell, will be taking it through the process, as will financial advisor PJT Partners. Arch (NYSE:ACI) hit its recent high stock price on AugustRead More


A Perennial Gale Hits the Coffee Industry

Jan 11th, 2016 | Filed under: Agriculture, Commodities, Commodities, Farmland, Investing in Commodities, Natural Resources and Land, Newly Added

The popularity of the drip coffee maker is in decline, or at least it has passed its peak.  In 2013. 58% of coffee drinkers had used such a coffee maker on the day before the day they were asked, that is, “yesterday.” That number was down to 54% in 2014,Read More


Top Alpha Stories of 2015: Nerds Win Three, Lose Two

Dec 29th, 2015 | Filed under: Commodities, Industry Size & Managers, Investing in Commodities, Newly Added, Regulatory, Regulatory Environment, Structure of the Hedge Funds Industry, The A.I. Industry

We offer our annual review of the five top Alpha stories of the year ending, in the course of which we mention that these are exciting times in the world of basic biological/medical research. They’ve been exciting at least since the completion of the map of the human genome in 2003, when attention turned to what can be done with that map. Read More


The Canary in the Coal Stocks and Fossil Fuel Divestment: the Portfolio You Save May Be Your Own

Sep 14th, 2015 | Filed under: Climate change, Commodities, Energy

A Wall Street analyst recommends bottom fishing in fossil fuel stocks and does an excellent job in analyzing all the market forces EXCEPT the primary one, rapidly increasing climate change. If he is typical of Wall Street expert analysis on fossil fuel stocks, be afraid. Be very afraid. Read More


CFTC Exempts ASX Clear from DCO Registration

Aug 25th, 2015 | Filed under: Alpha Hunters, Alpha Seekers, Commodities, Hedge Fund Industry Trends

The CFTC has issued its first exemption from the CDO registration mandate under 5b (h). The successful petition for that exemption, from ASX Clear, has the additional merit of having inspired an idiosyncratic seeming, but concise, comment letter, quoted in full here. Read More


Eurekahedge: The Markets are Reading the Headlines

Aug 18th, 2015 | Filed under: Alpha Seekers, Alpha Strategies, Commodities, CTA, Currencies, Hedge Fund Strategies

In the three month period that ends with July, Eurekahedge’s Greater China Index (which has 85 constituents) is down 9.39%. That has come about for precisely the reasons that a reader of the pertinent headlines would guess. Read More


Commodities & Currencies From May to August: How Much Has Changed

Aug 12th, 2015 | Filed under: Commodities, Currencies, Insolvency

What a difference a summer makes! In May of this year it was still taken for granted that the "normalization" of Federal Reserve policy and so of U.S. interest rates approached. Now, that cannot even remotely be taken for granted.Read More


Overtrading and the Danger of Pro Rata

Jul 30th, 2015 | Filed under: Algorithmic and high-frequency trading, Commodities, Currencies, Derivatives, Forex

Guest columnist Ginger Szala looks at pro rata and what happens if...Read More


Vindication for Pirrong and Irwin: Why Are Trafigura’s Profits Up?

Jun 22nd, 2015 | Filed under: Commodities, Derivatives, Indexes, Media Coverage of Hedge Funds

Trafigura has done quite well from the decline in crude oil prices in recent months. So well, in fact, as to throw a harsh light on a story that appeared in The New York Times in December 2013. Read More


House of Saud Retains Plenty of Clout

Jun 11th, 2015 | Filed under: Commodities, Macroeconomics

A measured view of the underlying reality of the world market in crude oil suggests that the price may have gone as low as the Saudis want it to go. For traders there may be little if any further gain on the downside. Read More


Are CTAs mumbo jumbo or additive for a diversified hedge fund portfolio?

Jun 9th, 2015 | Filed under: Commodities, Hedge Fund Industry Trends, Hedge Fund Strategies

Guest columnist Don Steinbrugge looks at the value of trend-following CTAs in a portfolio.Read More


Copper Prices: Why the Downslope?

May 26th, 2015 | Filed under: Commodities, Hard metals, Risk management, Technology

How long will it take before the world again sees copper at around $10,000 a ton, the going price it touched (though briefly) in early 2011? Perhaps several more years and another full business cycle. There may be a lot of down before an upturn gets us there. Read More


Down Memory Lane: That WTI-Brent Divergence

Feb 18th, 2015 | Filed under: Commodities, Infrastructure, oil

For one professor, the surprising divergence in the prices of WTI/Brent crude in the period 2010-2012 was a case study in how commodity prices can teach us about supply chain conditions. Faille looks back at his article, and forward past today's calmer but still-fluctuating spread. Read More


ECB Beats SNB in race for the Bottom

Jan 19th, 2015 | Filed under: Algorithmic and high-frequency trading, Commodities, Currencies

An SNB announcement caused wild market moves Jan. 15th, not only in Forex but in commodity and equity prices as well. In the wake of the commotion, one key question has to be: why the announcement? Why this sudden change in the policy of Switzerland's central bankers? Read More


Top 5 Alpha Stories of 2014

Dec 30th, 2014 | Filed under: Alpha Hunters, Commodities, Emerging markets

In the middle of the year now ending, the U.S. Supreme Court delivered as complete a victory as it could manage to the hold-out bondholders in the Argentine-default dispute. Enforcement efforts plod on, and it seems likely a related story could make our top five list next year, too. Read More


Case study: Straits gives managed futures a facelift

Dec 18th, 2014 | Filed under: Commodities, Retail Investing

As alternative investments become more mainstream, managers who traditionally have operated in the alternatives arena face a number of questions, including what is the right offering, the proper structure and how do we market the new vehicle. Guest columnist Ginger Szala examines the thought processes of one group as they made the leap to retailization.Read More


Qatar and the QIA: When the SWF Is Also a Family Office

Dec 10th, 2014 | Filed under: Commodities, Institutional Investing, Technology

The royal family in Qatar, the House of Thani, just took direct control of the emirate's sovereign wealth fund. Also, that fund just invested big in Uber, confirming its reputation as perhaps the worlds most aggressive deal-hunting institution. Read More


Don’t Blame the Swiss: Results Discounted Days Before Vote

Dec 8th, 2014 | Filed under: Commodities, Currencies, Forex, Gold, Hard metals

The price of gold took a swan dive as November ended, just as Swiss voters formally nixed an initiative that would have required the central bank to buy a lot of the stuff. Faille argues that this is not a matter of cause and effect. It is, on the other hand, a fascinating case study in the discounting machinery that is a market. Read More


The Building of an Infrastructure for Renewables: A Report

Nov 5th, 2014 | Filed under: Alternative energy, Commodities, Infrastructure, Private Equity, Socially responsible investing

In 2012, [as the crude oil price was settling in to $110 and low vol,] the renewables’ infrastructure space for private funds reached an aggregate estimated deal value of $132 billion. In 2013, that fell to $95 billion. It now seems unlikely that 2014 will match last year. Read More


The Undead Enron Model Returns to the World above Ground

Nov 2nd, 2014 | Filed under: Commodities, Energy, Legislation/Court rulings, Regulatory

Enron was once the leader in a category of merchant traders that mediated in the world of energy commodities. Enron died, and banks largely took it over. Yet in spirit, at least, Enron is back. Read More


Central Clearing and the Bank of England

Oct 29th, 2014 | Filed under: Commodities, Risk management

A Bank of England paper discuses the "cover 2" standard for the adequacy of the default funds of central clearing houses, an issue of increasing importance as the push to centrally-clear everything picks up steam. One question it raises somewhat incidentally is the proper pronunciation of the acronym SLOIM, for "stressed losses over initial margins." Read More


The Bubble This Time: Oil & Gas Energy Stocks?

Oct 15th, 2014 | Filed under: Commodities, Energy, Indexes

If we look for the recent peak in Dow Jones U.S. oil & gas stocks we’ll look to the start of the summer. In June of this year the energy sector got above $850. The fall from that height puts the size of our correction in the neighborhood of 16%. It is possible these stocks are leading the rest of the market down. Read More


Exemptions and Pools: CFTC Harmonizes with the JOBS Act

Sep 17th, 2014 | Filed under: Commodities, Hedge Fund Regulation

Two rules within the CFTC rulebook that offer exemptions for certain CPOs from certain regulatory requirements mirrored the original pre-JOBS Act Reg D on the SEC side. But of course we are now in a post-JOBS Act world, and the CFTC staff has now acted, not through a rule change but by staff letter, to harmonize with its sister agency and with the JOBS Act mandate. Read More


Producing Energy: The Closest Thing to a Perfect Asset

Jul 7th, 2013 | Filed under: Alpha Seekers, Commodities, Energy

Guest columnist Paul Thomas looks at the energy markets.Read More


After You Go as Low as You Can Go

Jul 2nd, 2013 | Filed under: Commodities, CTA

Welton has modeled an investment approach, specifically a multi-asset class trend following approach, and has measured how it would have performed if back-fitted into certain periods of sustained and sharp interest rate increases in the decades since the death of Bretton Woods. Read More


Marc Rich: A Life, Not Just a Pardon

Jul 1st, 2013 | Filed under: Commodities, Currencies

We pause to mark the death of a man who, more than any other, was responsible for the creation of a spot market in crude oil in the hectic period after the Yom Kippur War. Read More