Malcolm Graham
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It’s been an ugly first half for commodities in 2017

As the first half of the year draws to a close, disappointment in the slumping commodities sector grows.

After posting a gain last year for the first time in six years, the Bloomberg Commodity Index BCOM, +0.28 which tracks 22 commodity futures contracts, is down roughly 7.7% year-to-date to stand below the $81 level Wednesday. It finished out 2016 more than 11% higher.

The index “tried to show some life in 2016 only to crap out in 2017 thus far,” said Adam Koos, president of Libertas Wealth Management Group.

“The lows around $82 were an important level of support that had been touched four times in a year,” he said. “Thanks to weak oil prices, that same floor gave way and broke this June.”

Many commodities have continued on the downward paths they were on by the end of the first quarter, with sugar SBV7, +0.89 down about 36% for the year as of Wednesday, iron ore trading 18% lower, and oil CLQ7, +0.71 LCOU7, +0.71 suffering a loss of roughly 16%.