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Fiona Boal

Head of Commodities and Real Assets, S&P Dow Jones Indices

Fiona Boal is Head of Commodities and Real Assets at S&P Dow Jones Indices (S&P DJI). She is responsible for the product management of the commodities, real asset, and housing price indices, including the S&P GSCI, Dow Jones Commodity Index (DJCI), S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller Home Price Indices, and S&P Real Assets Indices. These indices are leading measures of the commodities market, U.S. residential real estate prices, and composite real assets.
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Feb 1, 2021

Commodities Start the Year on the Front Foot

The headline S&P GSCI rose 4.9% in January, as the industrial portion of the global economy continued to bounce back from the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdowns in 2020, and the prices of many agricultural commodities spiked higher on the back of record demand from Asia and the growing risk of grain…

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Dec 1, 2020

Industrial Commodities Benefit from Hopeful COVID-19 Vaccine News

November proved to be a good month for risk assets, including commodities. The headline S&P GSCI rose 12.0%, outperforming the S&P 500®, which gained 10.8%. Promising developments on the COVID-19 vaccine front and the U.S. election outcome rewarded risk assets such as energy and industrial metals, while safe-haven assets like gold lost some luster. The…

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Nov 2, 2020

Energy Drags Commodities Lower in October

The headline S&P GSCI fell 3.6% in October. Energy was responsible for the bulk of the declines in October, while agriculture continued to benefit from the return of demand from China, as well as weather-related supply issues. Across the energy complex, the rising number of COVID-19 infections, a second wave of lockdowns, and travel restrictions…

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Oct 1, 2020

A Second Wave Sinks Commodities in September

The headline S&P GSCI fell 3.6% in September on the back of growing concern regarding the prolonged economic impact of a second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. Across sectors, both industrial metals and energy contracted, while the agriculture and livestock sectors benefited from cursory signs of the return of demand from China. The S&P GSCI…

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Aug 3, 2020

Dollar Malaise Supports Commodities in July

The S&P GSCI rose 3.8% in July 2020, taking its YTD performance to down 33.9%. Weakness in the U.S. dollar against a range of currencies supported commodities. The broad U.S. dollar fell to a two-year low at the end of the month. Lower real rates, a weaker dollar, and widespread fiscal and monetary stimulus measures…

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Jul 10, 2020

A Cast of Crude Oil Indices

Over the past two decades, innovation in futures-based commodity indexing has allowed for the launch of commodity indices beyond broad market beta indices and into more sophisticated strategies with non-traditional roll mechanisms or contract selection. In that vein, S&P Dow Jones Indices (S&P DJI) offers a wide variety of oil indices that offer exposure at…

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Jul 8, 2020

Commodity Indices in Unprecedented Times

This blog reflects on the actions taken by S&P Dow Jones Indices (S&P DJI) to ensure that our commodity indices remain replicable and investable in light of the recent extraordinary market conditions experienced in the oil market. Perhaps no other investable asset has been as severely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic as oil—not equities, not…

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Jun 18, 2020

Crude Oil Can Get Carried Away by Contango

The long-term impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on commodities markets is not yet known. There have undoubtedly been short-term impacts on supply and demand, ranging from a collapse in oil demand to supply disruptions at individual mines as a result of COVID-19 infections among mine employees. The longer-term implications of these demand and supply shocks,…

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Apr 23, 2020

Liquid, Long/Short Alternative Strategies Performed Strongly in Q1 2020

With the stock market in the midst of a historic slump, many investors may be looking to alternatives to protect against a prolonged downturn. The S&P Strategic Futures Indices are designed to measure the performance of passively constructed, liquid, and transparent solutions by spreading risk evenly across global futures markets utilizing a long/short trend-following strategy…

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Apr 22, 2020

Indexing Managed Futures Strategies

Managed futures strategies generally tend to be trend following, which means that when an individual asset shows a clear price uptrend (or downtrend), the strategy will hold a long (or short) position in the asset. The strategies use a wide variety of quantitative models that utilize highly liquid, regulated, exchange-traded financial derivatives across equity, fixed…

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