Commodities In Review: March 2020

Commodities In Review: March 2020

In a bleak month, palladium blew the other commodities out of the water.

Reviewed by: Heather Bell
Edited by: Heather Bell

Commodities had a less-than-stellar month in January, with several funds deep in the red and just a handful recording positive returns. The iPath Series B Bloomberg Coffee Subindex Total Return ETN (JO) was down 20.78%; followed by the United States Oil Fund LP (USO); and the United States Natural Gas Fund LP (UNG), down 15.31% and 14.92%, respectively. At the other end of the spectrum, the Aberdeen Standard Physical Palladium Shares ETF (PALL) was up an impressive 20.41%. The iPath Bloomberg Cocoa Subindex Total Return ETN (NIB) was up a much less dramatic 10.41%, and the iPath Series B Bloomberg Sugar Subindex Total Return ETN (SGG) was up 8.97%. Commodity ETFs as a whole pulled in nearly $1.2 billion, with the SPDR Gold Trust (GLD) accounting for $504.9 million of that. USO gained $314.5 million, and the Invesco Optimum Yield Diversified Commodity Strategy No K-1 ETF (PDBC) pulled in $209.2 million. The Invesco DB Commodity Index Tracking Fund (DBC) lost more than any other commodity ETF, with outflows of just $39.1 million, NIB lost $37.1 million and the iShares Silver Trust (SLV) lost $14.4 million.


Sources: Bloomberg and FactSet. Data from 12/31/2019 to 1/31/2020. 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.