Soros sounds alarm on oil ‘bubble’

FT -- Billionaire investor George Soros is to tell US lawmakers on Tuesday that “a bubble in the making” is under way in oil and other commodities and that commodity indices are not a legitimate asset class for institutional investors.

He is expected to tell a congressional committee that rising oil prices are the result of a number of fundamental changes and factors in the market, but that the relatively recent ability of investment institutions to invest in the futures market through index funds is exaggerating price rises and creating an oil market bubble.

“I find commodity index buying eerily reminiscent of a similar craze for portfolio insurance which led to the stock market crash of 1987,” Mr Soros will tell the Senate commerce committee, according to a draft text seen by the Financial Times.

“In both cases, the institutions are piling in on one side of the market and they have sufficient weight to unbalance it. If the trend were reversed and the institutions as a group headed for the exit as they did in 1987 there would be a crash.”