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The GSCI (Goldman Sachs Commodity Index), now named S&P GSCI, is a benchmark index for investment in the commodity markets. It is made up of a diversified group of commodities, including energy, industrial metals, precious metals, agricultural, and livestock products. Specially, it gives a measure of the performance of the commodity markets and serves as an investment tool for portfolio diversification.


The phonetics of the keyword GSCI (S&P) is: “Gee-Ess-See-Eye (Ess and Pee)”

Key Takeaways

  1. The S&P GSCI (formerly Goldman Sachs Commodity Index) is a composite index of commodity sector returns that provides investors with a reliable and publicly accessible benchmark for investment performance in the commodity markets.
  2. The index is world-production weighted; the quantity of each commodity futures contract represents proportion of that commodity futures production. This makes it largely reflective of the overall global commodity market. It includes energy, industrial metals, agricultural, livestock, and precious metals.
  3. Despite being weighted towards energy commodities (with a heavy emphasis on oil), the S&P GSCI still offers diversified exposure across different commodity futures markets. This exposure can serve as a potential hedge against inflation, provide portfolio diversification, and offer potential for positive absolute returns.


The S&P GSCI (Goldman Sachs Commodity Index) is a crucial tool in the business and finance world as it is used extensively as a benchmark for investment performance in the commodity markets. This index, now owned and maintained by Standard & Poor’s (S&P), comprises a diversified basket of commodities and is designed to measure their overall performance. It plays a significant role in risk management, providing investors with a tool to hedge against inflation and currency fluctuations. Also, it serves as a guide to understand commodity market movements and helps investors take strategic investment decisions. Therefore, its importance lies in its ability to accurately reflect the state of the global economy, by tracking price changes in the raw materials used in all sectors of production.


S&P GSCI, or the S&P Goldman Sachs Commodity Index, serves a large-scale role in the global economy by providing investors with a reliable and publicly available benchmark for investment performance in the commodity markets. It is a composite index of commodity sector returns which signifies the returns that are potentially available through an unleveraged investment in the futures contracts on physical commodities that comprise the list. The index provides diversification benefits as an asset which is susceptible to different economic and market pressures than stocks and bonds, such as inflation or geopolitical factors.Furthermore, the GSCI is not only a measure of investment performance but it also serves as a world production-weighted index, and as such, it is a valuable tool in gauging global economic performance. Comprising more than 20 commodities from all commodity sectors, including energy products, industrial metals, agricultural products, livestock products, and precious metals, it reflects the relative signficance of each of these sectors in the global economy. Hence, the S&P GSCI is an indispensable tool for investors, economists, and policy-makers for understanding the health and trends in the global economy.


The S&P GSCI (Goldman Sachs Commodity Index) is a composite index composed of commodities from various sectors, used as a benchmark for investment performance. Here are three real-world examples:1. Oil Prices Influence in GSCI: One of the significant commodities included in GSCI is Crude oil, which has significant weightage. When the oil prices drastically increased in mid-2008, the GSCI surged to its all-time high due to an increase in the oil prices.2. Portfolio Diversification: Asset management companies like BlackRock and Fidelity may incorporate GSCI commodities into their diversified portfolios. An increase in any of GSCI’s commodities (like energy, agricultural, industrial metals, precious metals, and livestock) could potentially boost the returns of these portfolios.3. Hedging Against Inflation: Many analysts view commodities as a protection against inflation. So, financial advisors might recommend clients to invest in GSCI commodities to hedge against rising inflation. For example, if inflation increases rapidly, the GSCI might potentially gain due to a rise in commodity prices. As a result, investors could potentially offset the loss in purchasing power due to inflation.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)

What does GSCI (S&P) stand for?

GSCI stands for Goldman Sachs Commodity Index, which was renamed to S&P GSCI after Standard & Poor’s acquired the index from Goldman Sachs in 2007.

What is the S&P GSCI?

The S&P GSCI is a widely recognized world-leading benchmark that can be used to track commodities’ performance. It serves as an investable index that reflects commodity futures’ value and is balanced in the world production.

What commodities are tracked in the S&P GSCI?

The S&P GSCI tracks a diversified basket of commodities, including energy, industrial metals, agricultural products, livestock, and precious metals.

How is the S&P GSCI calculated?

The S&P GSCI is calculated using a world production-weighted methodology. This means that the weight of each commodity in the index corresponds to its relative significance in the world economy, based on its production.

Who can invest in S&P GSCI?

Individuals, institutional investors, and financial institutions can invest in the S&P GSCI. It offers a valuable tool to manage risk, diversify portfolios and potentially profit from rising commodity prices.

Where can I find the current and historical data for S&P GSCI?

The current and historical data for the S&P GSCI can usually be found on financial news websites, investment platforms, and the official S&P Dow Jones Indices website.

How often is the S&P GSCI rebalanced?

The S&P GSCI is annually rebalanced in January to ensure that each commodity’s weighting accurately reflects its relative significance in the world economy.

Why is the S&P GSCI considered a good measure of commodity performance?

The S&P GSCI is considered a reliable measure of commodity performance due to its diversified and world production-weighted methodology. This ensures that it provides a fair representation of commodity market performance over time.

Related Finance Terms

  • Commodity Index: The GSCI is a commodity index. An index is a statistical measure that represents the value of a batch of commodities.
  • Diversified Exposure: The GSCI provides diversified exposure to commodities. It means that it includes various types of commodities to reduce risk.
  • Futures Contract: The S&P GSCI is weighted by world production and is based on the price of futures contracts, which are agreements to buy or sell a commodity at a set price on a future date.
  • Investment Portfolio: Investors might use the S&P GSCI as part of their investment portfolio to hedge against inflation or for diversification.
  • Spot Price: This is the current market price at which the GSCI commodities are bought or sold for immediate payment and delivery.

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