The rise and fall of commodities

Commodities have asserted themselves as one of the dominant asset classes in the last few years and consequently they are becoming more readily available to investors. However they do not come without their problems and whether the more exotic classes will survive remains to be seen. Rebecca Hampson reports

Fears of inflation, sovereign risk combined with demand from emerging markets and depreciation of the US dollar have seen demand for commodities soar, catapulting them into an asset class of their own. New products and indexes have been launched this year and the battle to overcome contango continues to be fought.

"The investment case for commodities has got many rationales [not least] a protection against inflation," says Tim Owens, head of commodity solutions at JP Morgan in London. "There is

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