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The Present Value Model of Rational Commodity Pricing

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  • Pindyck, Robert S

Abstract

The present value model relates an asset's price to the sum of its discounted expected future payoffs. The author explores the limits of the model by testing its ability to explain the pricing of storable commodities. For commodities the payoff stream is the convenience yield that accrues from holding inventories, and it can be measured directly from spot and futures prices. Hence the model imposes restrictions on the joint dynamics of spot and futures prices, which the author tests for four commodities. He finds close conformance to the model for heating oil, but not for copper or lumber, and especially not for gold. The pattern is the same for the serial dependence of excess returns. These results suggest that for three of the four commodities, prices at least temporarily deviate from fundamentals. Copyright 1993 by Royal Economic Society.

Suggested Citation

  • Pindyck, Robert S, 1993. "The Present Value Model of Rational Commodity Pricing," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 103(418), pages 511-530, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:ecj:econjl:v:103:y:1993:i:418:p:511-30
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    6. Robert S. Pindyck & Julio J. Rotemberg, 1993. "The Comovement of Stock Prices," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 108(4), pages 1073-1104.
    7. Robert S. Pindyck, 1994. "Inventories and the Short-Run Dynamics of Commodity Prices," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 25(1), pages 141-159, Spring.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • G12 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates
    • G13 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Contingent Pricing; Futures Pricing

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