Commodities In Review: January 2019

Commodities had a rough time during November.

Reviewed by: Heather Bell
Edited by: Heather Bell

November was a pretty dismal month for commodity ETFs. Although very few funds had positive returns, the United States Natural Gas Fund LP (UNG) had a rather outsized month, rising nearly 40%. It was followed quite distantly by the Aberdeen Standard Physical Palladium Shares (PALL), which was up 8.83%, and the iPath Series B Bloomberg Copper Subindex Total Return ETN (JJC), up 4.66%. The worst performers were in the energy commodity sector, with the United States Oil Fund LP (USO) losing 22.19%, the United States Gasoline Fund LP (UGA) losing 19.27% and the Invesco DB Energy Fund (DBE) losing 17.63%. Flows were fairly muted, with USO pulling in the most, at $363.3 million, followed by the SPDR Gold Trust (GLD), which gained $307.3 million and the iShares S&P GSCI Commodity Indexed Trust (GSG), which gained $63 million. The Invesco DB Commodity Index Tracking Fund (DBC) lost $269 million, and the United States Natural Gas Fund LP (UNG) and the Invesco Optimum Yield Diversified Commodity Strategy No K-1 ETF (PDBC) lost $149.3 million and $146.5 million, respectively.


Source: Bloomberg. Data from 10/31/2018 to 11/30/2018. ETFs chosen to represent each sector based on the most liquid ETF in each segment of the ETF Classification System.



Heather Bell is a former managing editor of She has also held editorial positions at Dow Jones Indexes and Lehman Brothers. Bell is a graduate of Dartmouth college and resides in the Denver area with her two dogs.