Exchange traded products that track sugar futures have bounced the past few weeks after peaking earlier this year.
Soft commodities investments, such as a sugar-related exchange traded notes (ETNs), offer a great way to diversify an investor’s commodity portfolio.
The iPath DJ-UBS Sugar ETN (NYSEArca: SGG) is up nearly 20% over the past month. The fund tries to reflect front-month futures contracts and rolls exposure to next month’s contracts before maturity.
The iPath Pure Beta Sugar ETN (NYSEArca: SGAR) is up 10% in the last month, according to Morningstar. The fund offers greater protection on long-term investments by reducing the risks of roll costs that come from contango.
Currently, the fundamentals support sugar prices. Brazil, the largest producer of sugar, is seeing supplies dwindle, and production in the rest of South America has diminished 17% in the first half of May, remarks Ben McFadden for IndexUniverse.
Additionally, delays in shipping from ports in Thailand, where a record 9.6 million tons of sugar was produced in the past year, have also put pressure on sugar supplies.
Investors looking into sugar may also like to know that soft commodities futures are mostly in backwardation, which means that fund managers aren’t paying extra when rolling expiring contracts to the next month. Backwardation is indicative of tight supply and allows managers to profit from rolling to less-expensive contracts before maturity.