OECD Food, Agriculture and Fisheries Papers

ISSN :
1815-6797 (online)
DOI :
10.1787/18156797
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Selected studies on various food, agriculture and fisheries issues from the OECD Trade and Agriculture Directorate.

NB. No. 1 to No. 58 were released under the previous series title OECD Food, Agriculture and Fisheries Working Papers.

 

World Wheat Price Volatility

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Author(s):
Wyatt Thompson1, Garry Smith2, Armelle Elasri2
Author Affiliations
  • 1: University of Missouri, United States

  • 2: OECD, France

Publication Date
19 Nov 2012
Bibliographic information
No.:
59
Pages
33
DOI
10.1787/5k8zpt62fs32-en

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This study complements OECD analyses on commodity price volatility by providing quantitative assessments of the impact of two structural changes that a number of market observers have identified as contributing to world wheat market price volatility. The factors examined relate to changes in demand in the large emerging countries of the BRICs (comprising Brazil, the Russian Federation, India and China), as a result of continuing economic growth and development and the effect of a lower levels of global wheat stocks in recent years. A further scenario extends the analysis of the role of stocks in price volatility by examining some effects of a hypothetical international buffer stockholding scheme to stabilise international wheat prices. Each scenario was undertaken with the Aglink-Cosimo model and the stochastic baseline as reported in the OECD-FAO Agricultural Outlook, 2011-2020. The results suggest that both factors have contributed to the recorded volatility in world wheat markets in recent years. However the increase in market volatility arising from economic development and income growth is likely to occur gradually, while the moderating effect of larger stocks may only be fleeting. The stylised wheat buffer stock scheme with a price band may lead to slightly lower market volatility under highly specific conditions and constraining assumptions. These, however, have proven difficult to achieve and sustain in practice, as observed from past attempts to implement such schemes.
Keywords:
wheat, volatility, variability, buffer stocks, price, stochastic simulations, simulation, scenarios