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Trading financial products on margin carries a high risk and is not suitable for all investors. Ensure you fully understand the risks and take appropriate care to manage your risk.

Trading financial products on margin carries a high degree of risk and is not suitable for all investors. Please ensure you fully understand the risks and take appropriate care to manage your risk.

Your capital is at risk.

Commodities Trading

Commodities: Examples, types and importance in trading

Commodities examples image representation with commodities in wall street

In the global trading markets, commodities play a fundamental role. These raw materials and primary agricultural products are the building blocks of economies and are traded on a massive scale.

For traders, understanding the types of commodities, examples and the most traded ones is essential for diversifying portfolios) and capitalizing on market trends. Let's look into the types of commodities, identify the top traded ones, and explore their importance for traders.

Commodity examples

Commodities are typically categorized into two main types:

  • Hard commodities: These are natural resources that are mined or extracted, such as oil, natural gas, gold, and other metals.
  • Soft commodities: These are agricultural products or livestock, such as corn, wheat, coffee, sugar, soybeans, and pork.

Each type of commodity has its own set of market dynamics and is influenced by different factors, including weather, geopolitical events, and supply and demand balances.

Here are some of the most actively traded commodities in the world:

  1. Crude Oil: Often referred to as "black gold," crude oil is one of the most important commodities in the world, crucial for energy and transportation.
  2. Gold: Gold is a precious metal that serves as a safe-haven asset, often rising in value during times of economic uncertainty.
  3. Natural Gas: Used for heating, electricity, and industrial processes, natural gas prices are especially sensitive to seasonal demands.
  4. Soybeans: As a key source of protein and oil, soybeans are a staple commodity in global food production.
  5. Copper: Known for its conductivity, copper is widely used in construction and electrical applications, making it a key industrial metal.
  6. Coffee: One of the most beloved beverages globally, coffee is a highly volatile commodity affected by a variety of environmental and economic factors.

These commodities are integral to various sectors and are actively traded due to their high demand and economic significance.

Why are commodities important for traders?

Commodities are important for traders for several reasons:

  • Diversification: Adding commodities to a portfolio can reduce risk as their prices often move in opposition to stocks.
  • Inflation Hedge: Commodities can serve as a hedge against inflation since their prices typically rise when the cost of living increases.
  • Speculation: Traders can speculate on price movements to benefit from commodities without needing to hold the physical goods.
  • Global Economic Indicators: The prices of commodities can indicate the health of the global economy, especially those like crude oil and copper.


Q: How do traders invest in commodities?

A: Traders can invest in commodities through futures contracts, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), or stocks of companies involved in commodities.

Q: Are commodities a safe investment?

A: Commodities can be volatile and carry risks like any investment. Their prices can be affected by unpredictable factors like weather, political instability, and global economic changes.

Q: Why do commodity prices fluctuate so much?

A: Commodity prices are highly sensitive to supply and demand changes, which can be influenced by a wide range of factors, from weather events to changes in economic policies.

Q: Can small investors trade commodities?

A: Yes, small investors can trade commodities, often through ETFs or mutual funds that focus on commodities or commodity-producing companies.

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Not investment advice. Past performance does not guarantee or predict future performance.