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Speculative activity and returns volatility of Chinese agricultural commodity futures

Martin T. Bohl, Pierre Siklos () and Claudia Wellenreuther

Journal of Asian Economics, 2018, vol. 54, issue C, 69-91

Abstract: Chinese futures markets for agricultural commodities are among the fastest growing futures markets in the world and trading behaviour in those markets is perceived as highly speculative. We empirically investigate whether speculative activity in Chinese futures markets for agricultural commodities destabilizes futures returns. To capture speculative activity a speculation and a hedging ratio are used. Applying GARCH models we first analyse the influence of both ratios on the conditional volatility of eight heavily traded Chinese futures contracts. Additionally, VAR models in conjunction with Granger causality tests, impulse-response analyses and variance decompositions are used to obtain insight into the lead-lag relationship between speculative activity and returns volatility. For most of the commodities, we find a positive influence of the speculation ratio on conditional volatility. The results relying on the hedging ratio are inconclusive.

Keywords: Speculation ratio; Returns volatility; Chinese futures markets; Agricultural commodities (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: E44 F30 G12 G13 G15 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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