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Disentangling Corn Price Volatility: The Role of Global Demand, Speculation, and Energy

Lihong Lu McPhail, Xiaodong Du and Andrew Muhammad ()

Journal of Agricultural and Applied Economics, 2012, vol. 44, issue 3, 401-410

Abstract: Despite extensive literature on contributing factors to the high commodity prices and volatility in the recent years, few have examined these causal factors together in one analysis. We quantify empirically the relative importance of three factors: global demand, speculation, and energy prices/policy in explaining corn price volatility. A structural vector auto-regression model is developed and variance decomposition is applied to measure the contribution of each factor in explaining corn price variation. We find that speculation is important, but only in the short run. However, in the long run, energy is the most important followed by global demand.

Date: 2012
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