|From Nationalpost.com: This paper explores commodity and manufactures price over the past three centuries to answer three questions: Has commodity price volatility increased over time? The answer is no: there is little evidence of trend since 1700. Have commodities always shown greater price volatility than manufactures? The answer is yes.
Higher commodity price volatility is not the modern product of asymmetric industrial organizations - oligopolistic manufacturing versus competitive commodity markets - that only appeared with the industrial revolution..... Full Article: Source