Six Ways to Make More Money From Commodity ETFs

By Nidhi

SP Money From Commodity ETFs


ETFs have become a vital piece of the hybrid investor’s toolkit. They are fast and cheap to trade, they typically offer lower capital requirements than futures contracts and they provide investors with exposure to niche markets that they might not be able to access through traditional investment vehicles. This is especially useful for hybrid investors who want to diversify their portfolios as much as possible while maintaining low risk. But — like most things in life — ETFs don’t come cheap. 


Your commission on each trade can eat your profits, mainly if you’re trading small volumes. To help you avoid getting burnt by commodity ETFs trading costs, we’ve compiled six ideas that will help you make more cash from your commodity ETFs portfolio — even before commissions are considered.


Be an informed investor

Before you even think about trading ETFs, you must understand how they work. This may seem obvious, but many commodity investors are unaware of the risks associated with these products, which leads them to make costly mistakes. For example, some investors assume that ETFs provide them with direct ownership of the underlying commodities — when, in fact, they are nothing more than derivatives. 

Investors also often believe that their trades are executed “on an exchange” when, in reality, the majority of commodities you are trading are OTC; make sure to factor in the bid-ask spread when determining the value of your investment.

You can also make sure that your broker doesn’t execute a fat-finger trade, which happens when a broker mistakenly buys or sells a large amount of security instead of the order you placed.

In the case of mutual funds, you should be careful about how often you trade in and out of these funds. You may incur broker fees or trading costs that make frequent trading unprofitable.


Trade liquid contracts

The primary thing to remember while trading ETFs is to ensure that you’re trading liquid contracts. This will reduce the risk of your trade being “gapped,” — and it will also reduce the likelihood of your business being executed at a bargain-basement price due to insufficient demand or supply. 

If you’re trading illiquid contracts, you risk your trade being left “unfilled” — meaning that it will never be executed. This is particularly common among traders who like to pick and choose their ETFs. Liquidity can differ greatly from one contract to another. For example, the difference in liquidity between Brent crude oil and WTI crude oil is huge. Similarly, the contracts for different types of natural gas can be quite different in terms of liquidity.

Generally speaking, the more actively traded an asset is, the more liquid that asset is. Liquidity can also vary over time, especially for contracts that track commodities. When demand for particular commodity changes, its liquidity can as well. Liquidity is important, as it determines the ease with which you can access your funds. 

The more liquid a contract is, the easier it is to sell your position and take your profits or cut your losses. liquidity is determined by several factors, including volume, volatility, and contract size. The more liquid a contract is, the easier it is to sell your position and take your profits or cut your losses.


Use dark liquidity

If you’re trading liquid contracts, you may reduce your trading costs by using dark liquidity. Usually, traders who execute large volumes of ETFs and have the necessary capital requirements are sent price-sensitive information before smaller traders are. When it comes to ordering orders, this offers them an unfair edge. When a pre-trader’s order is matched with another pre-trader’s order, the exchange no longer has any information about the trade. Traders can sign up to a dark liquidity platform and keep their orders private but enjoy the benefits of trading on an exchange.

Thanks to dark liquidity, traders will no longer have to worry about their orders being front-run. Dark liquidity platforms keep all pre-traders’ orders private, so other traders won’t be able to see them. This means that they can’t be front-run either.


Commodity ETNs

ETNs are an excellent choice for investors who want low-cost exposure to commodities but who are unable to trade ETFs due to capital restrictions. While commodity ETFs typically require a minimum initial investment of $100,000, commodity ETNs are available for as little as $1,000. And while EFTs are traded, Commodity EFTs are often more expensive than their commodity ETN cousins. 

It is because EFTs are actively managed and must pay brokerage fees just like mutual funds. Commodity ETNs, on the other hand, are passively managed and incur no expenses, making them cheaper. Commodity ETFs may offer more flexibility than commodity ETNs. Some brokerages may require a minimum investment, and some may charge a small fee for holding an EFT in your account. Before investing in an ETF, read the fine print to see what fees may apply and if there’s a minimum threshold for holding the fund in your account.

Keep in mind that ETFs aren’t meant to be actively traded. Since they’re held in a brokerage account, they don’t come with the same liquidity as an exchange-traded product. Transacting through an ETF may take a few days, and there may be a minor cost.


Go short and leverage your ETF exposure

This is a very effective — but risky — way of increasing your ETF trading profits. If you want to go short on a particular commodity, but the ETF is expensive, you can “leverage” your position by selling the ETF allocated to a different commodity. For example, let’s say you want to go short on cocoa. But the cocoa ETFs is expensive at $4/share. 

So, to make a short trade on cocoa work, you could borrow the ETF for coffee ($3/share) and sell it fast. Then, You should only consider this if you are confident that cocoa prices will increase. You would also need to ensure that you have a large enough margin on your loan to cover any increase in cocoa prices. It is essential to diversify your risk when investing. Crypto Asset Exchange allows you to do this through various coins available to purchase. It is a fantastic option for investors who want to diversify their portfolios and don’t mind the risk of investing in cryptocurrency. 

Crypto Asset Exchange allows you to buy and sell assets, which can be a great way to earn money if the market trends in your investment direction. You can also collect dividends if you purchase an asset that offers them.


Swap to a dark EFT provider

Dark ETFs provide a lower commission rate for investors willing to forgo traditional ETFs liquidity. Dark ETFs operate on a principal transfer model, meaning the investor risks losing their principal. The risk associated with principal transfer can be mitigated by diversifying your assets among various asset classes. 

Because dark ETFs are less liquid than traditional ETFs, you should keep an appropriate amount of cash or other liquid assets in your account if you decide to invest in a dark ETF. This is essentially a “barter” agreement where you pay your broker for a reduction in the total cost of your trading fees. Ensure that your broker offers phone support and email. You want to make sure you can contact someone if you ever have any issues or have questions about how to proceed.

Most importantly, you want to find a broker who is trustworthy and reputable. You don’t want to risk your own money with a broker with a history of scams or scandals. Finding a trustworthy broker will help you to make the most of your experience and avoid unnecessary risk.



Commodity ETFs are a fantastic investment tool. But if you want to make the most money from them, you need to know how they work and how you can reduce the associated trading costs. In a liquidity crisis, having one of these strategies in your portfolio can save you from losing everything. Liquid contracts are the most prominent and widely used strategy for risk reduction. 

The problem with liquidity, even in the best of markets, is that it is not always there. Demand and supply determine the level of liquidity. When there are more buyers than sellers, the supply will rise. During typical market conditions, the demand for a particular commodity or contract may be insufficient to cover the reserve. Regardless of how narrowly you narrow your focus, it is imperative that you maintain a diversified portfolio. Continue reading for more insights on how to improve your financial portfolio.