IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/fip/feddop/2016_003.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Speculation in Commodity Futures Markets, Inventories and the Price of Crude Oil

Author

Listed:
  • Sung Je Byun

Abstract

This paper examines the role of inventories in re ners' gasoline production and develops a structural model of the relationship between crude oil prices and inventories. Using data on inventories and prices of oil futures, I show that convenience yields decrease at a diminishing rate as inventories increase, consistent with the theory of storage. In addition to exhibiting seasonal and procyclical behaviors, I show that the historical convenience yield averages about 18 percent of the oil price from March 1989 to November 2014. Although some have argued that a breakdown of the relationship between crude oil inventories and prices following increased nancial investors' participation after 2004 was evidence of an effect of speculation, I fi nd that the proposed price-inventory relationship is stable over time. The empirical evidence indicates that crude oil prices remained tied to oil-market fundamentals such as inventories, suggesting that the contribution of nancial investors' activities was weak.

Suggested Citation

  • Sung Je Byun, 2016. "Speculation in Commodity Futures Markets, Inventories and the Price of Crude Oil," Occasional Papers 16-3, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:feddop:2016_003
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://www.dallasfed.org/-/media/documents/banking/occasional/1603.pdf
    File Function: Full text
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Angus Deaton & Guy Laroque, 1992. "On the Behaviour of Commodity Prices," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 59(1), pages 1-23.
    2. Fama, Eugene F & French, Kenneth R, 1988. " Business Cycles and the Behavior of Metals Prices," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 43(5), pages 1075-1093, December.
    3. Nikolaos Milonas & Thomas Henker, 2001. "Price spread and convenience yield behaviour in the international oil market," Applied Financial Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 11(1), pages 23-36.
    4. McCracken, Michael W., 2007. "Asymptotics for out of sample tests of Granger causality," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 140(2), pages 719-752, October.
    5. Kilian, Lutz & Lee, Thomas K., 2014. "Quantifying the speculative component in the real price of oil: The role of global oil inventories," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 71-87.
    6. Ron Alquist & Gregory Bauer & Antonio Diez de los Rios, 2014. "What Does the Convenience Yield Curve Tell Us about the Crude Oil Market?," Staff Working Papers 14-42, Bank of Canada.
    7. Gary B. Gorton & Fumio Hayashi & K. Geert Rouwenhorst, 2013. "The Fundamentals of Commodity Futures Returns," Review of Finance, European Finance Association, vol. 17(1), pages 35-105.
    8. Baumeister, Christiane & Kilian, Lutz, 2014. "A General Approach to Recovering Market Expectations from Futures Prices With an Application to Crude Oil," CEPR Discussion Papers 10162, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    9. 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.
    10. Raffaella Giacomini & Halbert White, 2006. "Tests of Conditional Predictive Ability," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 74(6), pages 1545-1578, November.
    11. 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.
    12. Büyükşahin, Bahattin & Robe, Michel A., 2014. "Speculators, commodities and cross-market linkages," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 38-70.
    13. James D. Hamilton, 2009. "Causes and Consequences of the Oil Shock of 2007-08," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 40(1 (Spring), pages 215-283.
    14. Clark, Todd E. & West, Kenneth D., 2007. "Approximately normal tests for equal predictive accuracy in nested models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 138(1), pages 291-311, May.
    15. Bryan R. Routledge & Duane J. Seppi & Chester S. Spatt, 2000. "Equilibrium Forward Curves for Commodities," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 55(3), pages 1297-1338, June.
    16. Bassam Fattouh, Lutz Kilian, and Lavan Mahadeva, 2013. "The Role of Speculation in Oil Markets: What Have We Learned So Far?," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 3).
    17. West, Kenneth D, 1996. "Asymptotic Inference about Predictive Ability," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(5), pages 1067-1084, September.
    18. Brennan, Donna & Williams, Jeffrey & Wright, Brian D, 1997. "Convenience Yield without the Convenience: A Spatial-Temporal Interpretation of Storage under Backwardation," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 107(443), pages 1009-1022, July.
    19. Lutz Kilian & Daniel P. Murphy, 2014. "The Role Of Inventories And Speculative Trading In The Global Market For Crude Oil," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 29(3), pages 454-478, April.
    20. Acharya, Viral V. & Lochstoer, Lars A. & Ramadorai, Tarun, 2013. "Limits to arbitrage and hedging: Evidence from commodity markets," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 109(2), pages 441-465.
    21. Suleyman Basak & Anna Pavlova, 2016. "A Model of Financialization of Commodities," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 71(4), pages 1511-1556, August.
    22. Kydland, Finn E. & Prescott, Edward C., 1988. "The workweek of capital and its cyclical implications," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(2-3), pages 343-360.
    23. Luciana Juvenal & Ivan Petrella, 2015. "Speculation in the Oil Market," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 30(4), pages 621-649, June.
    24. Lutz Kilian, 2008. "Exogenous Oil Supply Shocks: How Big Are They and How Much Do They Matter for the U.S. Economy?," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 90(2), pages 216-240, May.
    25. Lester G. Telser, 1958. "Futures Trading and the Storage of Cotton and Wheat," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 66, pages 233-233.
    26. Eduardo Schwartz & James E. Smith, 2000. "Short-Term Variations and Long-Term Dynamics in Commodity Prices," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 46(7), pages 893-911, July.
    27. repec:kap:iaecre:v:8:y:2002:i:4:p:324-333 is not listed on IDEAS
    28. Diebold, Francis X & Mariano, Roberto S, 2002. "Comparing Predictive Accuracy," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 20(1), pages 134-144, January.
    29. Chow, Ying-Foon & McAleer, Michael & Sequeira, John M, 2000. "Pricing of Forward and Futures Contracts," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 14(2), pages 215-253, April.
    30. Christopher R. Knittel & Robert S. Pindyck, 2016. "The Simple Economics of Commodity Price Speculation," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 8(2), pages 85-110, April.
    31. Lutz Kilian, 2009. "Not All Oil Price Shocks Are Alike: Disentangling Demand and Supply Shocks in the Crude Oil Market," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(3), pages 1053-1069, June.
    32. Jaime Casassus & Pierre Collin‐Dufresne, 2005. "Stochastic Convenience Yield Implied from Commodity Futures and Interest Rates," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 60(5), pages 2283-2331, October.
    33. 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.
    34. Gregory R. Duffee, 2002. "Term Premia and Interest Rate Forecasts in Affine Models," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 57(1), pages 405-443, February.
    35. James L. Smith, 2009. "World Oil: Market or Mayhem?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 23(3), pages 145-164, Summer.
    36. Ramey, Valerie A, 1989. "Inventories as Factors of Production and Economic Fluctuations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(3), pages 338-354, June.
    37. Gibson, Rajna & Schwartz, Eduardo S, 1990. "Stochastic Convenience Yield and the Pricing of Oil Contingent Claims," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 45(3), pages 959-976, July.
    38. Ng, Victor K & Pirrong, Stephen Craig, 1994. "Fundamentals and Volatility: Storage, Spreads, and the Dynamics of Metals Prices," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 67(2), pages 203-230, April.
    39. Refet S. Gürkaynak & Jonathan H. Wright, 2012. "Macroeconomics and the Term Structure," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 50(2), pages 331-367, June.
    40. 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.
    41. Fama, Eugene F & French, Kenneth R, 1987. "Commodity Futures Prices: Some Evidence on Forecast Power, Premiums,and the Theory of Storage," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 60(1), pages 55-73, January.
    42. James D. Hamilton & Jing Cynthia Wu, 2015. "Effects Of Index‐Fund Investing On Commodity Futures Prices," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 56, pages 187-205, February.
    43. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1982. "Time to Build and Aggregate Fluctuations," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(6), pages 1345-1370, November.
    44. Henry L. Bryant & David A. Bessler & Michael S. Haigh, 2006. "Causality in futures markets," Journal of Futures Markets, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 26(11), pages 1039-1057, November.
    45. Robert S. Pindyck, 2001. "The Dynamics of Commodity Spot and Futures Markets: A Primer," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 3), pages 1-30.
    46. Nicholas Kaldor, 1939. "Speculation and Economic Stability," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 7(1), pages 1-27.
    47. Fattouh, Bassam, 2010. "The dynamics of crude oil price differentials," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(2), pages 334-342, March.
    48. Walter N. Thurman, 1988. "Speculative Carryover: An Empirical Examination of the U.S. Refined Copper Market," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 19(3), pages 420-437, Autumn.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Chi Zhang & Zhengning Pu & Qin Zhou, 2018. "Sustainable Energy Consumption in Northeast Asia: A Case from China’s Fuel Oil Futures Market," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 10(1), pages 1-14, January.
    2. Reinhard Ellwanger, 2017. "On the Tail Risk Premium in the Oil Market," Staff Working Papers 17-46, Bank of Canada.
    3. Mason, Charles F. & Wilmot, Neil A., 2020. "Jumps in the convenience yield of crude oil," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(C).
    4. Maryam Ahmadi & Niaz Bashiri Behmiri & Matteo Manera, 2020. "The theory of storage in the crude oil futures market, the role of financial conditions," Journal of Futures Markets, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 40(7), pages 1160-1175, July.

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Ing-Haw Cheng & Wei Xiong, 2014. "Financialization of Commodity Markets," Annual Review of Financial Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 6(1), pages 419-441, December.
    2. Lang, Korbinian & Auer, Benjamin R., 2020. "The economic and financial properties of crude oil: A review," The North American Journal of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 52(C).
    3. Ames, Matthew & Bagnarosa, Guillaume & Matsui, Tomoko & Peters, Gareth W. & Shevchenko, Pavel V., 2020. "Which risk factors drive oil futures price curves?," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(C).
    4. Valenti, Daniele & Manera, Matteo & Sbuelz, Alessandro, 2020. "Interpreting the oil risk premium: Do oil price shocks matter?," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(C).
    5. Boyd, Naomi E. & Harris, Jeffrey H. & Li, Bingxin, 2018. "An update on speculation and financialization in commodity markets," Journal of Commodity Markets, Elsevier, vol. 10(C), pages 91-104.
    6. Ron Alquist & Gregory Bauer & Antonio Diez de los Rios, 2014. "What Does the Convenience Yield Curve Tell Us about the Crude Oil Market?," Staff Working Papers 14-42, Bank of Canada.
    7. 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.
    8. Figuerola-Ferretti, Isabel & McCrorie, J. Roderick & Paraskevopoulos, Ioannis, 2020. "Mild explosivity in recent crude oil prices," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(C).
    9. Daniele Valenti, 2018. "Modelling the Global Price of Oil: Is there any Role for the Oil Futures-spot Spread?," Working Papers 2018.06, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
    10. Efthymios G. Pavlidis & Ivan Paya & David A. Peel, 2018. "Using Market Expectations to Test for Speculative Bubbles in the Crude Oil Market," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 50(5), pages 833-856, August.
    11. Nikitopoulos, Christina Sklibosios & Squires, Matthew & Thorp, Susan & Yeung, Danny, 2017. "Determinants of the crude oil futures curve: Inventory, consumption and volatility," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 84(C), pages 53-67.
    12. Jin, Xin, 2019. "The role of market expectations in commodity price dynamics: Evidence from oil data," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 90(C), pages 1-18.
    13. Baumeister, Christiane & Kilian, Lutz, 2014. "A General Approach to Recovering Market Expectations from Futures Prices With an Application to Crude Oil," CEPR Discussion Papers 10162, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    14. Filippo Natoli, 2018. "Analyzing the structural transformation of commodity markets: financialization revisited," Questioni di Economia e Finanza (Occasional Papers) 419, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
    15. Casassus, Jaime & Collin-Dufresne, Pierre & Routledge, Bryan R., 2018. "Equilibrium commodity prices with irreversible investment and non-linear technologies," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 95(C), pages 128-147.
    16. Liu, Peng & Tang, Ke, 2011. "The stochastic behavior of commodity prices with heteroskedasticity in the convenience yield," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 211-224, March.
    17. Mayer, Herbert & Rathgeber, Andreas & Wanner, Markus, 2017. "Financialization of metal markets: Does futures trading influence spot prices and volatility?," Resources Policy, Elsevier, vol. 53(C), pages 300-316.
    18. Joëts, Marc, 2015. "Heterogeneous beliefs, regret, and uncertainty: The role of speculation in energy price dynamics," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 247(1), pages 204-215.
    19. Baumeister, Christiane & Guérin, Pierre & Kilian, Lutz, 2015. "Do high-frequency financial data help forecast oil prices? The MIDAS touch at work," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 31(2), pages 238-252.
    20. Michel A. Robe & Jonathan Wallen, 2016. "Fundamentals, Derivatives Market Information and Oil Price Volatility," Journal of Futures Markets, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 36(4), pages 317-344, April.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Convenience yield; Forecasting oil prices; Stable oil price-inventory relationship; Speculation; Theory of storage;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • F0 - International Economics - - General

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:fip:feddop:2016_003. See general 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: . General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/frbdaus.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/frbdaus.html .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.