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EM is no longer a commodity play

The Emerging View

16 February 2021

EM is no longer a commodity play. This report establishes commodity profiles for 114 EM countries and shows that extreme sensitivity to commodities is concentrated in a relatively small section of EM, while the overwhelming majority of countries either have balanced trade in commodities or are highly diversified in terms of their exposures. It is therefore unwise to treat individual EM regions as simple directional commodity plays, let alone EM as a whole. The better way to account for commodity-related risks is to use each country’s unique commodity profile as an input in investment decisions exactly the same way as one would use other country-specific macroeconomic variables, such as debt-to-GDP, inflation, domestic politics, and economic growth.

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