A Dynamic Factor Model for Commodity Prices

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In this note, we present the Commodities Factor Model (CFM), a dynamic factor model for a large cross-section of energy and non-energy commodity prices. The model decomposes price changes in commodities into a common “global” component, a “block” component confined to subgroups of economically related commodities and an idiosyncratic price shock component. Unlike with ordinary factor models, these components have meaningful economic interpretations: the global component mostly relates to global commodity demand shocks, while the idiosyncratic component mostly relates to commodity-specific supply shocks. We give several examples to show that the CFM provides plausible historical decompositions.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.34989/san-2017-12