Facts and Fantasies about Commodity Futures
AbstractWe construct an equally-weighted index of commodity futures monthly returns over the period between July of 1959 and March of 2004 in order to study simple properties of commodity futures as an asset class. Fully-collateralized commodity futures have historically offered the same return and Sharpe ratio as equities. While the risk premium on commodity futures is essentially the same as equities, commodity futures returns are negatively correlated with equity returns and bond returns. The negative correlation between commodity futures and the other asset classes is due, in significant part, to different behavior over the business cycle. In addition, commodity futures are positively correlated with inflation, unexpected inflation, and changes in expected inflation.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 10595.
Date of creation: Jun 2004
Date of revision:
Publication status: published as Gorton, Gary and K. Geert Rouwenhorst. "Facts And Fantasies About Commodity Futures," Financial Analysts Journal, 2006, v62(2,Mar/Apr), 47-68.
Contact details of provider:
Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.
Web page: http://www.nber.org
More information through EDIRC
Other versions of this item:
- G13 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Contingent Pricing; Futures Pricing
- G11 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Portfolio Choice; Investment Decisions
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Bessembinder, Hendrik, 1992. "Systematic Risk, Hedging Pressure, and Risk Premiums in Futures Markets," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 5(4), pages 637-67.
- Jagannathan, Ravi, 1985. " An Investigation of Commodity Futures Prices Using the Consumption-based Intertemporal Capital Asset Pricing Model," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 40(1), pages 175-91, March.
- Hamilton, James D, 1983. "Oil and the Macroeconomy since World War II," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 91(2), pages 228-48, April.
- French, Kenneth R, 1986. "Detecting Spot Price Forecasts in Futures Prices," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 59(2), pages S39-54, April.
- Schwert, G William, 1981. "The Adjustment of Stock Prices to Information about Inflation," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 36(1), pages 15-29, March.
- Paul Cashin & C. John McCDermott, 2002. "The Long-Run Behavior of Commodity Prices: Small Trends and Big Variability," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 49(2), pages 2.
- Dusak, Katherine, 1973. "Futures Trading and Investor Returns: An Investigation of Commodity Market Risk Premiums," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 81(6), pages 1387-1406, Nov.-Dec..
- Claude B. Erb & Campbell R. Harvey, 2005. "The Tactical and Strategic Value of Commodity Futures," NBER Working Papers 11222, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Fama, Eugene F, 1981. "Stock Returns, Real Activity, Inflation, and Money," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(4), pages 545-65, September.
- Roger W. Gray, 1961. "The Search for a Risk Premium," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 69, pages 250.
- Jegadeesh, Narasimhan & Titman, Sheridan, 1993. " Returns to Buying Winners and Selling Losers: Implications for Stock Market Efficiency," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 48(1), pages 65-91, March.
- James D. Hamilton, 1985. "Historical Causes of Postwar Oil Shocks and Recessions," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 1), pages 97-116.
- Marshall Blume & Robert Stambaugh, . "Biases in Computed Returns: An Application to the Size Effect (Revision of 2-83)," Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research Working Papers 11-83, Wharton School Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research.
- Hamilton, James D., 2003.
"What is an oil shock?,"
Journal of Econometrics,
Elsevier, vol. 113(2), pages 363-398, April.
- Blume, Marshall E. & Stambaugh, Robert F., 1983. "Biases in computed returns : An application to the size effect," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 387-404, November.
- Black, Fischer, 1976. "The pricing of commodity contracts," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 3(1-2), pages 167-179.
This item has more than 25 citations. To prevent cluttering this page, these citations are listed on a separate page. reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.Access and download statisticsgeneral information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ().
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.