Monday, April 06, 2009

Chart of the day: commodities vs. shares

Chart of the day: Dow Jones - AIG commodity index (^DJC) versus the S&P 500 (^GSPC) and the Dow Jones Industrial Average (^DJI), on a two year timeframe.

As you can see from the enlarged version of the chart (click chart to expand), all three indices are down by 30-40 percent over the two year period (April 2007 - April 2009).

You'll note that while US shares entered their bear market at the end of 2007, commodities to continued to outperform stocks (by a wide margin) up until the summer of 2008, when commodities joined the "liquidation party" which hit most major asset markets worldwide. Both stocks and commodities have taken their fair share of abuse on the downside since.

The three indices have staged a bit of a rally off of their early March lows, with ^DJC and ^DJI leading the way in relative performance (now down the least in percentage terms) on this two-year chart.

However, if you flip to a one-year timeframe, the stock indices, ^DJI and ^GSPC, are shown to be outpacing the commodities, ^DJC, in terms of relative performance (with commodities showing a - 45% return over the period).

Some of the long/index commodity ETFs such as DBC, DJP, and DYY seem to have been forming a base and showing strength lately (Disclosure: no position in any of these at time of writing).

Will the leading commodity indexes begin to outperform shares, or do the major US stock averages still have some juice to the upside?