Category Archives: Commodities

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 Read more […]

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 Read more […]

June Heatwave for Metal and Petroleum Commodities

The S&P GSCI rose 5.09% in June and 10.47% for the second quarter of 2020. The recovery in the second quarter did not fully retrace the dramatic downside from the first quarter, as can be seen in the index’s -36.50% YTD return. Continued recovery in petroleum commodities contributed, but bullish sentiment in industrial metals such Read more […]

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, Read more […]

IRONclad ORE Is Full of Steam

Just like the ironclad battleships of the 19th century, the S&P GSCI Iron Ore has steamed through 2020 in the explosive sea battle atmosphere of this year’s highly volatile markets. It stayed afloat when most commodities sunk to negative YTD returns (see Exhibit 1). The S&P GSCI Iron Ore was up 22.1% YTD as of Read more […]

Gold’s Time to Shine

The first half of 2020 has been gold’s time to shine. The double-digit YTD gains outpaced equities and other safe-haven assets during these uncertain recessionary times. As of May 29, 2020, the S&P GSCI Gold was up 13.94% YTD. Unprecedented global fiscal and monetary stimulus measures have significantly increased sovereign debt levels, leading to concerns Read more […]

Commodities Were Energetic in May

Bullish sentiment propelled the S&P GSCI higher by 16.4% in May, its best monthly performance in 11 years. The broad commodity index’s more than 50% exposure to energy was a key contributor to its performance. Energy led the way, with the WTI-based S&P GSCI Crude Oil up 55.0%, bouncing impressively off the lows in April. Read more […]

How Are Insurance Investors Using ETFs?

S&P Dow Jones Indices recently published its fifth annual analysis of exchange-traded fund (ETF) usage by U.S. insurers in their general accounts. Regulatory filing data, which details the individual securities that insurers hold, showed that in 2019, ETF AUM in insurance general accounts grew to USD 31 billion—a 16% increase over 2018. While this headline Read more […]

Will April Pain Lead to May Gain for Commodities?

COVID-19 continued to wreak havoc across commodities markets in April. The S&P GSCI fell 9.67% in April and 47.92% YTD. Economic data continued to weaken into uncharted territory. Supply chains crucial to the flow of commodities from extraction to consumption experienced a sudden shut off and demand collapsed. Energy and agriculture underperformed, while metals offered Read more […]

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 Read more […]