Factor Structure in Commodity Futures Return and Volatility

Peter Christoffersen, Asger Lunde, Kasper Vinther Olesen

Research output: Working paperResearch


Using data on more than 750 million futures trades during 2004-2013, we analyze eight stylized facts of commodity price and volatility dynamics in the post financialization period. We pay particular attention to the factor structure in returns and volatility and to commodity market integration with the equity market. We find evidence of a factor structure in daily commodity futures returns. However, the factor structure in daily commodity futures volatility is even stronger than in returns. When computing model-free realized commodity betas with the stock market we find that they were high during 2008-2010 but have since returned to the pre-crisis level close to zero. The common factor in commodity volatility is nevertheless clearly related to stock market volatility. We conclude that, while commodity markets appear to again be segmented from the equity market when only returns are considered, commodity volatility indicates a nontrivial degree of market integration.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationAarhus
PublisherAarhus Universitetsforlag
Number of pages59
Publication statusPublished - 2014
SeriesCreates Research Paper
SeriesRotman School of Management Working Paper


  • Factor structure
  • Financial volatility
  • Beta
  • High-frequency data
  • Commodities
  • Financialization

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