Commodity ETP Weekly – Commodities end volatile week only slightly down
- Inflows into oil ETPs reach highest level since March 2015 as investors bet on unsustainably low prices.
- Physical gold receives highest inflows since August 2015 as investors hedge against market malaise.
- Industrial metal basket ETPs see highest outflows since July 2015.
- After a violent crash in cyclical commodities and other risk assets, prices started to recover in the second half of the week.
- In contrast to the futures market, ETP investors have been contrarian and have built long positions, particularly in oil.
- Market malaise has maintained strong interest in gold as a haven asset.
Physical gold receives highest inflows since August 2015 as investors hedge against market malaise. Gold has traditionally been the first port of call in times of market stress. While most people cannot understand why cyclical assets fell so hard so fast, many realised that gold performs well in times of panic and went long the yellow metal while waiting for an entry point back into other cyclicals. Gold rose 0.7% last week, 3.4% YTD. Inflows into physical gold ETPs rose to US$85.3mn.
Industrial metal basket ETPs see highest outflows since July 2015. Investor panic saw US$8.9mn redemptions from industrial metal baskets. That came even though most industrial metal prices were only marginally down by mid-week and ended the week higher after Chinese GDP data confirmed strong demand from the largest consumer of metals. Both long and short copper ETPs saw outflows of US$2.7mn and US$1.5mn respectively, highlighting polarised views on the metal. The International Copper Study Group forecasts a supply deficit of 0.5% this year, which will be the 6th consecutive year of a supply shortfall. We don’t think that the market can continue to ignore the increasing tightness in the metal and prices are likely to recover after having fallen 23.6% in the past year.
Key events to watch this week. The market will be keenly tuned into the Fed’s post-policy meeting statement and press conference to hear how the US central bank will react to the recent market volatility. The ECB has already hinted that it will offer more QE, but we expect the Fed to hold steady with its announced policy trajectory of continuing to increase rates to ward off inflationary pressures and keep a buoyant labour market in-check. Currently the market is only pricing in one rate increase this year, while the Fed has indicated it will move four times. We expect US dollar strength, which has been weighting on commodity market performance, to fall away when the market gets in line with Fed thinking. The BoJ and RBNZ will also host their policy meetings this week.
Nitesh Shah, Research Analyst at ETF Securities provides an analysis of last week’s performance, flow and trading activity in commodity exchange traded products and a look at the week ahead.
For more information contact
ETF Securities Research team
ETF Securities (UK) Limited
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