Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE (www.oxfordhandbooks.com). © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 21 January 2020

Abstract and Keywords

Roughly coinciding with the onset of the commodity price boom of the 2000s was an influx of financial investment in commodity derivatives. This ‘financialization’ has given rise to debates regarding the potential influence of investors on commodity prices. This chapter examines these debates and places them within the context of the wider scholarship on financialization. It argues that critiques of financialization are problematic in several important respects. They are underpinned by long-standing suspicions and misconceptions of derivatives trading as a socially unproductive or harmful activity; they tend to conflate the participation of financial investors with ‘speculation’. The chapter finds that the term ‘financialization’ is ultimately misleading for in its characterization of the new institutional realities of the commodity price formation process. Rather than attempting to demarcate ‘purely’ financial investment in commodities from commercial trading, ‘financialization’ should refer to the growth of ‘hyper’ or short-term trading that occurs in commodity markets.

Keywords: commodities, financialization, speculation, derivatives, super-cycle

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.