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Speculation, Returns, Volume and Volatility in Commodities Futures Markets


  • Andrea Bastianin

    (University of Milan-Bicocca, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei)

  • Matteo Manera

    (University of Milan-Bicocca, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei)

  • Marcella Nicolini

    (University of Pavia, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei)

  • Ilaria Vignati

    (Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei)


Our study contributes to the literature in two directions. First, we investigate the behaviour of futures prices returns for different energy and agricultural commodities, over the period 1986-2010. Second, we measure the market vulnerability to financial speculation for energy commodities over the period 1992-2010. We find that financial speculation is poorly significant in modelling returns in commodities futures, while macroeconomic and financial factors are relevant. Spillovers between commodities are present and correlations among commodities volatilities are large and time-varying. A higher degree of vulnerability to financial speculation characterizes the futures market for crude oil in the 2008 crisis.

Suggested Citation

  • Andrea Bastianin & Matteo Manera & Marcella Nicolini & Ilaria Vignati, 2012. "Speculation, Returns, Volume and Volatility in Commodities Futures Markets," Review of Environment, Energy and Economics - Re3, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:fem:femre3:2012.01-07

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    Cited by:

    1. Shalini, Velappan & Prasanna, Krishna, 2016. "Impact of the financial crisis on Indian commodity markets: Structural breaks and volatility dynamics," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(C), pages 40-57.
    2. Beckmann, Joscha & Belke, Ansgar & Czudaj, Robert, 2014. "Regime-dependent adjustment in energy spot and futures markets," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 40(C), pages 400-409.
    3. Matteo Manera, 2013. "Introduction to a Special issue on "Financial Speculation in the Oil Markets and the Determinants of the Price of Oil"," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 3).
    4. Matteo Manera, Marcella Nicolini, and Ilaria Vignati, 2013. "Financial Speculation in Energy and Agriculture Futures Markets: A Multivariate GARCH Approach," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 3).
    5. Ederer, Stefan & Heumesser, Christine & Staritz, Cornelia, 2013. "The role of fundamentals and financialisation in recent commodity price developments: An empirical analysis for wheat, coffee, cotton, and oil," Working Papers 42, Österreichische Forschungsstiftung für Internationale Entwicklung (ÖFSE) / Austrian Foundation for Development Research.
    6. Konrad, Sebastian & Bartsch, Peter, 2015. "Rohstoffspekulation und Nahrungsmittelmarkt," Working Papers 86, Berlin School of Economics and Law, Institute of Management Berlin (IMB).
    7. Janda, Karel & Krska, Stepan & Prusa, Jan, 2014. "Odhad nákladů na podporu české fotovoltaické energie
      [The Estimation of the Cost of Promotion of the Czech Photovoltaic Energy]
      ," MPRA Paper 54108, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item


    Energy; Commodities; Futures markets; Speculation; GARCH; Market depth; Volumes;

    JEL classification:

    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • G13 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Contingent Pricing; Futures Pricing


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