Investor's wiki

Commodity Index

Commodity Index

What Is a Commodity Index?

A commodity index is a index that tracks the price and returns on a basket of commodities. These indexes are frequently accessible for investing through mutual funds or exchange traded funds (ETFs). Numerous investors who need access to the commodities market without entering the futures market choose to invest in commodity index funds.

The value of these indexes vacillates in light of their underlying commodities; like stock index futures, this value can be traded on an exchange.

Understanding a Commodity Index

Each commodity index on the market has an alternate cosmetics in terms of what commodities it is made out of. The Refinitiv/CoreCommodity CRB Total Return Index, for instance, comprises of 19 unique types of commodities, including, cocoa, soybeans, gold, crude oil, and wheat.

Commodity indexes additionally shift in the manner they are weighted; a few indexes are similarly weighted, and that means that every commodity makes up a similar percentage of the index. Different indexes have a foreordained, fixed weighting scheme that might value a higher percentage in a specific commodity. For instance, some commodity indexes are intensely weighted for energy-related commodities like coal and oil rather than agricultural commodities.

The Dow Jones Commodity Futures Index, laid out in 1933, was the main index to follow commodity prices. Goldman Sachs sent off its commodity index in 1991, called the Goldman Sachs Commodity Index (GSCI). Goldman Sachs' index was renamed the S&P GSCI when it was purchased by Standard and Poor's in 2007. The Bloomberg Commodity Index (BCOM) family and the Rogers International Commodity Index (RICI) are two other famous commodity indexes.

Investors can't straightforwardly invest in a commodity index however they can invest in funds that track specific indexes. Investing in commodity index funds acquired in ubiquity in the mid 2000s as the price of oil started to move out of the noteworthy $20 to $30 per barrel range that it had occupied for more than a decade, and Chinese industrial production began to quickly develop.

The rise in demand for commodities because of China's developing economy, combined with a limited global supply of commodities, made commodity prices rise and numerous investors turned out to be more interested in finding a method for investing in the raw materials of industrial production.

Special Considerations

Commodity indexes vary from different indexes in one vital manner: the total return of the commodity index is completely dependent on the capital gains, or price performance, of the commodities in the index.

For most investments, the total return of the investment incorporates periodic cash receipts —, for example, interest, dividends, and different conveyances — as well as capital gains. For instance, stocks pay dividends and bonds pay interest, which adds to the investment's total return even when there is no increase in the investment's price.

Commodities don't pay dividends or interest, so an investor is dependent exclusively on capital gains for investment performance. On the off chance that the price of commodities doesn't go up, the investor encounters a zero return on their investment.

A zero return scenario is never the case for bonds that pay interest and stocks that pay dividends. For instance, on the off chance that a stock price is something similar toward the finish of the investment horizon, yet has paid a dividend, the investor will have a positive return on investment.


  • Commodity indexes differ in the manner they are weighted and the commodities that they are made out of.
  • A commodity index is an index that tracks the price of a basket of commodities.
  • Commodity indexes contrast from different indexes in one vital manner: the total return of the commodity index is completely dependent on the capital gains, or price performance, of the commodities in the index.
  • The value of these indexes vacillates in view of their underlying commodities.


What Makes Up a Commodity Index?

The parts that make up a commodity index are the underlying commodities, like wheat, oil, gold, or soybeans. A commodity index picks a basket of commodities to follow and the performance of that index relies upon the price developments of the underlying commodities.

How Do I Buy Commodities?

There are three primary methods for investors to buy commodities. These are to purchase the commodity outright, to invest in the stocks of commodity-related companies, for example, oil and gas companies, and to invest in funds that have exposure to commodities. Purchasing the commodity outright can be troublesome and convoluted, like buying and putting away physical oil. Investing in an exchange traded fund (ETF) that has exposure to commodities is the most simple method of buying commodities.

What Are the Major Commodity Indexes?

The major commodity indexes are the S&P GSCI Index, the Bloomberg Commodity Index, and the DBIQ Optimum Yield Diversified Commodity Index. These are just three of the numerous commodity indexes accessible to investors.