The Tokyo Commodity Exchange on Tuesday put into operation a new trading system that includes extended hours to permit trading at times when economic data is announced. It will also facilitate higher-speed transactions. It is the first such upgrade for the exchange since May 2009, aiming to improve convenience for investors and reinvigorate the sluggish commodity futures market. TOCOM will share its derivatives trading system with the Osaka Exchange, a unit of Japan Exchange Group Inc., or JPX. Commodity futures industry officials hope that the joint use will encourage stock brokerage firms to start commodities trading.
Over the past year Consumer Package Goods (CPG) companies have seen many of their Costs of Goods (CoG) decline. This has been driven by lower commodity prices and lower oil prices. These lower prices have affected plastic prices in many packaging materials and also the prices of many chemicals and product ingredients. On top of these lower commodity prices, flat labor costs have helped to keep CoG down. So…these cost savings must have been passed to consumer…right?
Thomas H. Davenport is the President's Distinguished Professor of Information Technology and Management at Babson College and a Fellow at the MIT Initiative on the Digital Economy. We don't typically think of the jobs that we perform as commodities. The Merriam-Webster entry on commodity describes it as "a mass-produced unspecialized product." But most of us view our jobs as specialized or somehow differentiated. We typically believe that we do them differently, and often better, than anyone else with the same job.