Commodities In Review: January 2020

November was a mixed month for commodity ETFs.

Reviewed by: Heather Bell
Edited by: Heather Bell

Commodities had a rough time during November, with more than half of the category’s funds landing in the red. Still, the iPath Series B Bloomberg Coffee Subindex Total Return ETN (JO) managed to record an impressive 13.33% increase. That was followed by the iPath Bloomberg Cocoa Subindex Total Return ETN (NIB), up 8.15%; and the iPath Series B Bloomberg Sugar Subindex Total Return ETN (SGG), up 3.78%. The iPath Series B Bloomberg Nickel Subindex Total Return ETN (JJN) exhibited the worst performance, with a decline of 18.05%, while the United States Natural Gas Fund LP (UNG) decreased 15.87% and the iPath Bloomberg Lead Subindex Total Return ETN (LD) fell 11.41%. Flows were fairly undramatic for the period, with total outflows of $1.2 billion for the category. UNG gained $54.5 million, followed by the iPath Bloomberg Commodity Index Total Return ETN (DJP) and the First Trust Global Tactical Commodity Strategy Fund (FTGC) pulling in $14.3 million and $2.8 million, respectively. The SPDR Gold Trust (GLD) saw outflows of $923.8 million, while the iShares Silver Trust (SLV) lost roughly one-tenth of that, with outflows of $96.2 million. The United States Oil Fund LP (USO) saw the third-largest outflows, at $82.2 million.


Sources: Bloomberg and FactSet. Data from 10/31/2019 to 11/30/2019. 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.