With the U.S. dollar strengthening and global growth concerns lingering, the commodities market have stumbled. Nevertheless, traders can still find some opportunities, but they will have to target single commodity-specific exchange traded funds.
The PowerShares DB Commodity Index Tracking Fund (NYSEArca: DBC), the largest commodity-related ETF and tracks a broad basket of the 14 most heavily traded commodities, has declined 12.6% over the past three months. Meanwhile, the iShares GSCI Commodity-Indexed Trust (NYSEArca: GSG), which includes a broader group of 24 commodities, has decreased 13.5%.
Citigroup analysts attribute the commodities’ poor performance to a “trifecta” of factors, including rising supply and diminished demand for oil, expectations for a bumper crop harvest in the northern hemisphere, and a surging U.S. dollar, reports Neil Hume for Financial Times.
Over the past three months, the United States Brent Oil Fund (NYSEArca: BNO) declined 18.7% while the United States Oil Fund (NYSEArca: USO), which tracks West Texas Intermediate oil, fell 14.8%. [Saudi Arabia’s Ambitions Keep Pressure On Oil ETFs]
U.S. farmers are harvesting a bumper crop year, with record corn and soybean crops. The Teucrium Corn Fund (NYSEArca: CORN) and the Teucrium Soybean Fund (NYSEArca: SOYB) are off 20.4% and 13.2%, respectively, year-to-date. [Record Harvests Chase Investors From Agriculture ETPs]
Meanwhile, the PowerShares DB U.S. Dollar Index Bullish Fund (NYSEArca: UUP), which tracks the price movement of the U.S. dollar against a basket of currencies, gained 6.6% over the past three months. A stronger dollar makes USD-denominated commodities more expensive for foreign buyers, specifically gold and other precious metals. The SPDR Gold Shares (NYSEArca: GLD) has dropped 8.0% over the past three months.
While investors still want commodity exposure for their diversification qualities, some are beginning to take a more pick-and-choose approach.