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Effects of Speculation and Interest Rates in a "Carry Trade" Model of Commodity Prices

  • Frankel, Jeffrey A.

    (Harvard University)

The paper presents and estimates a model of the prices of oil and other storable commodities, a model that can be characterized as reflecting the carry trade. It focuses on speculative factors, here defined as the trade-off between interest rates on the one hand and market participants' expectations of future price changes on the other hand. It goes beyond past research by bringing to bear new data sources: survey data to measure expectations of future changes in commodity prices and options data to measure perceptions of risk. Some evidence is found of a negative effect of interest rates on the demand for inventories and thereby on commodity prices and positive effects of expected future price gains on inventory demand and thereby on today's commodity prices.

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File URL: https://research.hks.harvard.edu/publications/workingpapers/citation.aspx?PubId=9031&type=WPN
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Paper provided by Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government in its series Working Paper Series with number rwp13-022.

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Date of creation: Jun 2013
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Handle: RePEc:ecl:harjfk:rwp13-022
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  1. Geetesh Bhardwaj & Gary Gorton & K. Rouwenhorst, 2008. "Fooling Some of the People All of the Time: The Inefficient Performance and Persistence of Commodity Trading Advisors," Yale School of Management Working Papers amz2429, Yale School of Management.
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  3. Frankel, Jeffrey A. & Rose, Andrew K., 2010. "Determinants of Agricultural and Mineral Commodity Prices," Scholarly Articles 4450126, Harvard Kennedy School of Government.
  4. Christiane Baumeister & Lutz Kilian, 2011. "Real-Time Forecasts of the Real Price of Oil," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 30(2), pages 326-336, September.
  5. Michael Ye & John Zyren & Joanne Shore, 2002. "Forecasting crude oil spot price using OECD petroleum inventory levels," International Advances in Economic Research, Springer;International Atlantic Economic Society, vol. 8(4), pages 324-333, November.
  6. Phillips, Llad & Pippenger, John, 2005. "Some Pitfalls in Testing the Law of One Price in Commodity Markets," University of California at Santa Barbara, Economics Working Paper Series qt92b16177, Department of Economics, UC Santa Barbara.
  7. Gary Gorton & Fumio Hayashi & K. Rouwenhorst, 2007. "The Fundamentals of Commodity Futures Returns," Yale School of Management Working Papers amz2605, Yale School of Management, revised 01 Oct 2008.
  8. Kilian, Lutz & Lee, Thomas K, 2013. "Quantifying the Speculative Component in the Real Price of Oil: The Role of Global Oil Inventories," CEPR Discussion Papers 9297, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  9. Ron Alquist & Lutz Kilian & Robert J. Vigfusson, 2011. "Forecasting the Price of Oil," Staff Working Papers 11-15, Bank of Canada.
  10. Robert B. Barsky & Lutz Kilian, 2004. "Oil and the Macroeconomy Since the 1970s," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 18(4), pages 115-134, Fall.
  11. Deaton, Angus & Laroque, Guy, 1996. "Competitive Storage and Commodity Price Dynamics," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(5), pages 896-923, October.
  12. Boum-Jong Choe, 1990. "Rational expectations and commodity price forecasts," Policy Research Working Paper Series 435, The World Bank.
  13. Christiane Baumeister & Lutz Kilian, 2013. "What Central Bankers Need to Know about Forecasting Oil Prices," Staff Working Papers 13-15, Bank of Canada.
  14. Sergey V. Chernenko, 2004. "The information content of forward and futures prices: market expectations and the price of risk," International Finance Discussion Papers 808, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  15. Menzie D. Chinn & Michael LeBlanc & Olivier Coibion, 2005. "The Predictive Content of Energy Futures: An Update on Petroleum, Natural Gas, Heating Oil and Gasoline," NBER Working Papers 11033, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. 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..
  17. Dornbusch, Rudiger, 1976. "Expectations and Exchange Rate Dynamics," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 84(6), pages 1161-76, December.
  18. Frankel, Jeffrey A & Hardouvelis, Gikas A, 1985. "Commodity Prices, Money Surprises and Fed Credibility," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 17(4), pages 425-38, November.
  19. Moosa, Imad A. & Al-Loughani, Nabeel E., 1994. "Unbiasedness and time varying risk premia in the crude oil futures market," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(2), pages 99-105, April.
  20. Robert W. Kolb, 1992. "Is normal backwardation normal?," Journal of Futures Markets, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 12(1), pages 75-91, 02.
  21. Bopp, Anthony E. & Lady, George M., 1991. "A comparison of petroleum futures versus spot prices as predictors of prices in the future," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(4), pages 274-282, October.
  22. Ron Alquist & Lutz Kilian, 2010. "What do we learn from the price of crude oil futures?," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 25(4), pages 539-573.
  23. Jeffrey A. Frankel, 2006. "The Effect of Monetary Policy on Real Commodity Prices," NBER Working Papers 12713, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  24. repec:taf:jnlbes:v:30:y:2012:i:2:p:326-336 is not listed on IDEAS
  25. Ye, Michael & Zyren, John & Shore, Joanne, 2006. "Forecasting short-run crude oil price using high- and low-inventory variables," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 34(17), pages 2736-2743, November.
  26. Hamilton, James D. & Wu, Jing Cynthia, 2014. "Risk premia in crude oil futures prices," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 9-37.
  27. Robert B. Barsky & Lutz Kilian, 2001. "Do We Really Know that Oil Caused the Great Stagflation? A Monetary Alternative," NBER Working Papers 8389, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  28. Breeden, Douglas T, 1980. " Consumption Risk in Futures Markets," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 35(2), pages 503-20, May.
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  32. repec:kap:iaecre:v:8:y:2002:i:4:p:324-333 is not listed on IDEAS
  33. Ye, Michael & Zyren, John & Shore, Joanne, 2005. "A monthly crude oil spot price forecasting model using relative inventories," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 491-501.
  34. Antonio Merino & Alvaro Ortiz, 2005. "Explaining the so-called "price premium" in oil markets," OPEC Energy Review, Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, vol. 29(2), pages 133-152, 06.
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