EDHEC-Risk Institute Warns against “Speculative” Regulatory Proposals for Commodities Markets in Europe

Written on 20 June 2012.


EDHEC Position Paper

Drawing on the theoretical and empirical evidence in the academic literature, the EDHEC-Risk Institute position paper, entitled “Who Sank the Boat?” (in reference to the difficulty in apportioning causality for commodity price spikes), shows that the above assertions are simply wrong.

According to the author of the EDHEC-Risk paper, Hilary Till, “modern commodity futures markets are the result of 160 years of trial-and-error efforts. One result has been the creation of an effective price discovery process, which in turn assists in the coordination of individual efforts globally in dynamically matching current production decisions with future consumption needs in commodities.

“Before performing surgery on these institutions, we suggest that Finance Watch’s supporters tread carefully and not adopt “speculative” regulatory proposals whose ultimate effects are unknown. We further recommend that European Union policymakers instead consider studying market practices globally and then adopt what is demonstrably best practice, rather than invent new untested regulations.”

While agreeing that Finance Watch’s concern with food and oil price spikes is fully justified, EDHEC-Risk Institute is concerned that Finance Watch’s proposals in restricting speculation fall somewhere in the continuum of being a placebo to actually being harmful to the goals to which they aspire.

A copy of the position paper “Who Sank the Boat?” can be downloaded via the following link:

EDHEC-Risk Institute Position Paper “Who Sank the Boat?”

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