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What Explains the Rise in Food Price Volatility?

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  • Shaun K. Roache
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    Abstract

    The macroeconomic effects of large food price swings can be broad and far-reaching, including the balance of payments of importers and exporters, budgets, inflation, and poverty. For market participants and policymakers, managing low frequency volatility—i.e., the component of volatility that persists for longer than one harvest year—may be more challenging as uncertainty regarding its persistence is likely to be higher. This paper measures the low frequency volatility of food commodity spot prices using the spline- GARCH approach. It finds that low frequency volatility is positively correlated across different commodities, suggesting an important role for common factors. It also identifies a number of determinants of low frequency volatility, two of which—the variation in U.S. inflation and the U.S. dollar exchange rate—explain a relatively large part of the rise in volatility since the mid-1990s.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by International Monetary Fund in its series IMF Working Papers with number 10/129.

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    Length: 29
    Date of creation: 01 May 2010
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:10/129

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    Related research

    Keywords: Commodity markets; Agricultural prices; Commodity price fluctuations; Economic models; Food production; Price elasticity; Price increases; Supply elasticity; food price; commodity prices; palm oil; futures markets; open interest; food prices; stock market; consumer price index; inflation rate; commodity agreements; vegetable oils; food products; food crops; food price inflation; food product; food policy; spot market; equity prices; international food policy research institute; futures contracts; fao; food policy research; hedging; food consumption patterns; food consumption; global stock market;

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    References

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    1. David S. Jacks, Kevin H. O'Rourke and Jeffrey G. Williamson, 2009. "Commodity Price Volatility and World Market Integration since 1700," The Institute for International Integration Studies Discussion Paper Series iiisdp280, IIIS.
    2. Askari, Hossein & Cummings, John Thomas, 1977. "Estimating Agricultural Supply Response with the Nerlove Model: A Survey," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 18(2), pages 257-92, June.
    3. Allan D. Brunner, 1998. "El Nino and world primary commodity prices: warm water or hot air?," International Finance Discussion Papers 608, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    4. Seale, James L., Jr. & Regmi, Anita & Bernstein, Jason, 2003. "International Evidence On Food Consumption Patterns," Technical Bulletins 33580, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.
    5. Weaver, Robert D & Natcher, William C, 2000. "Commodity Price Volatility under New Market Orientations," MPRA Paper 9862, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    6. Robles, Miguel & Torero, Maximo & von Braun, Joachim, 2009. "When speculation matters:," Issue briefs 57, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    7. Hikaru Hanawa Peterson & William G. Tomek, 2005. "How much of commodity price behavior can a rational expectations storage model explain?," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 33(3), pages 289-303, November.
    8. Thompson, Wyatt & Meyer, Seth & Westhoff, Pat, 2009. "How does petroleum price and corn yield volatility affect ethanol markets with and without an ethanol use mandate?," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(2), pages 745-749, February.
    9. Amanor-Boadu, Vincent & Zereyesus, Yacob Abrehe, 2009. "How Much Did Speculation Contribute to Recent Food Price Inflation?," 2009 Annual Meeting, January 31-February 3, 2009, Atlanta, Georgia 46841, Southern Agricultural Economics Association.
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    Citations

    Blog mentions

    As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
    1. Interesting readings
      by Ajay Shah in Ajay Shah's blog on 2010-08-04 07:34:00
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    Cited by:
    1. Ikram Jebabli & Mohamed Arouri & Frédéric Teulon, 2014. "On the effects of world stock market and oil price shocks on food prices: An empirical investigation based on TVPVAR models with stochastic volatility," Working Papers 2014-209, Department of Research, Ipag Business School.
    2. Maitre d'Hotel, Elodie & le Cotty, Tristan & Jayne, Thomas S., 2012. "Is A Public Regulation Of Food Price Volatility Feasible In Africa? An Arch Approach In Kenya," 123rd Seminar, February 23-24, 2012, Dublin, Ireland 122551, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    3. Bellemare, Marc F. & Barrett, Christopher B. & Just, David R., 2010. "The Welfare Impacts of Commodity Price Fluctuations: Evidence from Rural Ethiopia," MPRA Paper 24457, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    4. Ott, Herve, 2012. "Which factors drive which volatility in the grain sector?," 123rd Seminar, February 23-24, 2012, Dublin, Ireland 122486, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    5. Dasgupta, Dipak & Dubey, R.N. & Sathish, R, 2011. "Domestic Wheat Price Formation and Food Inflation in India," MPRA Paper 31564, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    6. Koliai, Lyes & Avouyi-Dovi, Sanvi & Ano Sujithan, Kuhanathan, 2014. "On the determinants of food price volatility," Economics Papers from University Paris Dauphine 123456789/12798, Paris Dauphine University.
    7. Dipak Dasgupta & R N Dubey & R Satish, 2011. "Domestic Wheat Price Formation and Food Inflation in India: International Prices, Domestic Drivers (Stocks, Weather, Public Policy), and the Efficacy of Public Policy Interventions in Wheat Markets," Working Papers id:4291, eSocialSciences.

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