The COVID-19 pandemic and speculation in energy, precious metals, and agricultural futures

Imtiaz Sifat, Abdul Ghafoor, Abdollah Ah Mand

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

37 Citations (Scopus)


We report new evidence that speculation in energy and precious metal futures are more prevalent in crisis periods and even more so during the COVID-19 pandemic. In contrast, agricultural futures attract more hedging pressure. Post-GFC patterns mirror the 1980s’ recessions. Using quantile regression on a long-horizon sample we also find that speculative pressure generally coincides with abnormal returns in normal circumstances but not in the current pandemic. Instead, volatility is strongly and often non-linearly associated with speculation across instruments.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100498
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Behavioral and Experimental Finance
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2021


  • Amihud
  • Commodities
  • COVID-19
  • Futures
  • Gold
  • Oil
  • Pandemic
  • Silver
  • Speculation

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