Commodities Decline Due to Fundamentals Weakness

By Credit Suisse AG, Special for  USDR

Commodities declined in April on weakening industrial demand expectations out of Chinaand increasing US crude inventories, according to Credit Suisse Asset  Management.

The Bloomberg Commodity Index Total Return performance was negative for the month, with 15 out of 22 Index constituents posting  losses.

Credit Suisse Asset Management observed the  following:

  • Industrial Metals decreased 3.40%, led lower by Nickel, amid weakening demand expectations out of China as measures introduced to tighten property development and investment appear to have taken effect.
  • Energy declined 2.99% as US inventories of crude remained well oversupplied relative to average historical levels despite the tightening of international crude inventories.
  • Agriculture lost 1.23%. Coffee declined due to reports that US stockpiles of green coffee beans reached their highest level since the early 1990s, dampening near-term demand expectations for imports.
  • Precious Metals declined 0.56% after the first round of voting in the French presidential election eased risks of the country’s potential exit from the Euro.
  • Livestock gained 7.42%. Live Cattle increased the most on higher exports versus a year prior along with heightened cattle headcount concerns from anticipated cold and snowy weather in the US Midwest.

Nelson Louie, Global Head of Commodities for Credit Suisse Asset Management, said: “Geo-politics continue to remain at the forefront of macroeconomic attention. Meanwhile, European economic data have been generally constructive as of late, and political stabilization may make it easier for the positive momentum to continue, which could be supportive of economically-sensitive commodities. Within the Energy sector, global crude oil and petroleum products inventories continue to tighten, partially due to the OPEC-coordinated production cuts, with a decision in May on the table as to whether or not to extend those cuts. The resulting higher prices has led to increased US crude oil production, though not enough to fully offset the production cuts or increased demand. Thus, there are some positive signs indicating the tightening may have begun as the fundamentals underlying these markets continue to slowly  improve.”

Christopher Burton, Senior Portfolio Manager for the Credit Suisse Total Commodity Return Strategy, added: “The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration signaled the possibility of a return to an El Niño phenomenon in late summer. Resulting weather events may affect the key production cycle for agricultural crops, particularly grains within the US, which may cause prices to rise.  Separately, the March Jobs Report indicated that the US unemployment rate fell to its lowest level in almost ten years while wages continued to gradually increase. These statistics are suggestive of a tightening labor market and possible progress towards the US Federal Reserve’s goal of sustainable maximum employment. However, the Fed still maintains its forward guidance of only two additional rate hikes this year. This slow normalization of interest rates coupled with rising wage pressures may increase the probability that inflation overshoots  expectations.”

About the Credit Suisse Total Commodity Return  Strategy 

Credit Suisse’s Total Commodity Return Strategy is managed by a team with over 30 years of experience, and seeks to outperform the return of a commodities index, such as the Bloomberg Commodity Index Total Return or the S&P GSCI Total Return Index, using both a quantitative and qualitative commodity research process. Commodity index total returns are achieved  through:

  • Spot Return: price return on specified commodity futures contracts;
  • Roll Yield: impact due to migration of futures positions from near to far contracts; and
  • Collateral Yield: return earned on collateral for the futures.

As of April 30, 2017, the Team managed approximately USD 8.7 billion in assets  globally.

Credit Suisse  AG
Credit Suisse AG is one of the world’s leading financial services providers and is part of the Credit Suisse group of companies (referred to here as ‘Credit Suisse’). As an integrated bank, Credit Suisse offers clients its combined expertise in the areas of private banking, investment banking and asset management. Credit Suisse provides advisory services, comprehensive solutions and innovative products to companies, institutional clients and high-net-worth private clients globally, as well as to retail clients in Switzerland. Credit Suisse is headquartered in Zurich and operates in over 50 countries worldwide. The group employs approximately 46,640 people. The registered shares (CSGN) of Credit Suisse’s parent company, Credit Suisse Group AG, are listed in Switzerland and, in the form of American Depositary Shares (CS), in New York. Further information about Credit Suisse can be found at

Asset  Management
In its Asset Management business, Credit Suisse offers products across a broad spectrum of investment classes, including hedge funds, credit, index, real estate, commodities and private equity products, as well as multi-asset class solutions, which include equities and fixed income products. Credit Suisse’s Asset Management business manages portfolios, mutual funds and other investment vehicles for a broad spectrum of clients ranging from governments, institutions and corporations to private individuals. With offices focused on asset management in 21 countries, Credit Suisse’s Asset Management business is operated as a globally integrated network to deliver the bank’s best investment ideas and capabilities to clients around the  world.

All businesses of Credit Suisse are subject to distinct regulatory requirements; certain products and services may not be available in all jurisdictions or to all client  types.

Important Legal  Information
This document was produced by and the opinions expressed are those of Credit Suisse as of the date of writing and are subject to change. It has been prepared solely for information purposes and for the use of the recipient. It does not constitute an offer or an invitation by or on behalf of Credit Suisse to any person to buy or sell any security. Any reference to past performance is not necessarily a guide to the future. The information and analysis contained in this publication have been compiled or arrived at from sources believed to be reliable but Credit Suisse does not make any representation as to their accuracy or completeness and does not accept liability for any loss arising from the use  hereof.

Certain information contained in this document constitutes “Forward-Looking Statements” (including observations about markets and industry and regulatory trends as of the original date of this document), which can be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology such as “may”, “will”, “should”, “expect”, “anticipate”, “target”, “project”, “estimate”, “intend”, “continue” or “believe”, or the negatives thereof or other variations thereon or comparable terminology. Due to various risks and uncertainties beyond our control, actual events, results or performance may differ materially from those reflected or contemplated in such forward-looking statements. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on such statements. Credit Suisse has no obligation to update any of the forward-looking statements in this  document.

Certain risks relating to investing in Commodities and Commodity-Linked Investments: Exposure to commodity markets should only form a small part of a diversified portfolio. Investment in commodity markets may not be suitable for all investors. Commodity investments will be affected by changes in overall market movements, commodity volatility, exchange-rate movements, changes in interest rates, and factors affecting a particular industry or commodity, such as drought, floods, weather, livestock disease, embargoes, tariffs and international economic, political and regulatory developments. Commodity markets are highly volatile. The risk of loss in commodities and commodity-linked investments can be substantial. There is generally a high degree of leverage in commodity investing that can significantly magnify losses. Gains or losses from speculative derivative positions may be much greater than the derivative’s original cost. An investment in commodities is not a complete investment program and should represent only a portion of an investor’s portfolio management  strategy.

Copyright © 2017, CREDIT SUISSE GROUP AG and/or its affiliates. All rights  reserved.

SOURCE Credit Suisse  AG

All opinions expressed on USDR are those of the author and not necessarily those of US Daily Review.