S&P Launches Commodities, Natural Resources Indices

May 27, 2008 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - Commodities markets have been thriving of late - and investors have a new way to benchmark those investments.

Standard & Poor’s has announced the launch of two new indices aimed at providing investors with benchmark and investable exposure to the commodities and natural resources sectors.

According to a  press release , the S&P Global Natural Resources Index is designed to provide diversified, highly liquid and investable exposure across the primary commodity sectors of energy, agribusiness and metals & mining. Each of these sectors has two clusters – energy (oil, coal and gas), agribusiness (agriculture & livestock) and metals and mining (precious and industrial). The index offers focused coverage of the 60 largest companies across these six clusters, and is designed primarily for structured product providers and ETFs.

The S&P PMI Commodities and Resources Index is designed to provide a broader coverage of larger capitalized stocks from commodities and resources (energy, agribusiness and metals & mining,), with approximately 160 stocks suitable for benchmarking for performance measurement, data for research, or passive management, including funds and ETFs.

Natural Resources

According to the announcement, the S&P Global Natural Resources Index sits within S&P’s family of Global Thematic Indices. It uses a modified cap weighting at the constituent level subject to stock level constraints (10% cap per stock). To ensure investability, a minimum market capitalization of US$1 billion and a minimum six month average daily value traded of $10 million is required.   The three sectors, six clusters and 10 stocks per cluster are not capped, so the index weighting is bottom up driven.

The S&P PMI Commodity and Resources Index measures the performance of constituents that fall into three different natural resources buckets: Energy, Materials and Agriculture. Each bucket is capped at 33.33% to ensure that one bucket will not dominate the index. The index is a subset of the S&P/Citigroup BMI Global Equity Indices.

One-year returns, at 30 April 2008, were 35.27% for the S&P Global Natural Resources Index and 51.92% for the S&P PMI Commodity and Resources Index, according to S&P.

More information on the indices is online at.