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The 2006 spike in corn-based ethanol demand has contributed to the increase in basis volatility in corn and soybean markets across the United States, which has, to a significant degree, led to the observed large jumps in the prices of the two commodities. Despite the overall rise in basis volatility, there remain differences in the degree of volatility that exists across spatially separated markets, which might be caused by factors such as transportation costs, seasonality, and time-to-delivery. The focus of this study is threefold first, this work models basis data for six corn and soybean markets by using a multivariate GARCH model that incorporates the spatial linkages of these markets; next, the model is used to investigate whether the increase in ethanol demand has significantly aided in the rise of basis volatilities; and last, the spatio-temporal linkages among basis volatilities in different markets are examined under various scenarios of spot-price shocks.


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