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Volatility in Commodities
October 04, 2007

Volatility in Commodities

Recent comments from a heavy hitting Swiss commodities management firm reflect on my previous observations. Metals markets are so active with new investors that surges and sell-offs have become a way of life. Be ready for this if you are entering the precious metals markets. Think in long term.

Consider another investment category if you cannot tolerate roller coasters.

Commodities markets in general have seen record levels of false price reporting and manipulation over the past year. The Commodity Futures Trading Commission announced yesterday that it has collected a record $540 million in penalties and restitution resulting from cases of fraud, manipulation and various misconduct. Higher market volumes have led to more fraud in commodities.

Don't think we've seen too much of that yet with metals, but I would expect similar trends to come our way in time. My best advice - get to know your market, and those companies and individuals you work with, before you invest.

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About the Author
Tom Michael has been Krause Publications primary market analyst on more than 80 world and United States coin catalogs produced over the last 20 years. He came to KP in 1987 with a bachelor of arts degree in history, a master of arts degree in economics and a history of coin collecting stretching back to the 1960s. He began collecting world coins as a child by asking friends and relatives to bring coins back from overseas trips, visiting flea markets and having his mother watch for foreign coins in her register at the local grocery store. Today he works with a dedicated base of over 200 contributors to provide accurate market values for the five-volume Standard Catalog of World Coins series, as well as many specialty catalogs, including Coins & Currency of the Middle East and the fifth edition of Unusual World Coins.

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