WTI Crude Oil Speculators bullish bets rebounded in mid-February

March 2, 2019

March 2nd – By CountingPips.comReceive our weekly COT Reports by Email

WTI Crude Oil Non-Commercial Speculator Positions:

Large energy speculators advanced their bullish net positions in the WTI Crude Oil futures markets in February, according to the latest Commitment of Traders (COT) data released by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) on Friday.

This latest COT data is from the middle of February due to the government shutdown which suspended the releases for approximately a month. The CFTC is releasing data on Tuesdays and Fridays going forward until the data is back up to date.

The non-commercial futures contracts of WTI Crude Oil futures, traded by large speculators and hedge funds, totaled a net position of 313,967 contracts in the data reported through Tuesday February 19th. This was a gain of 25,753 net contracts from the previous week which had a total of 288,214 net contracts.

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The week’s net position was the result of the gross bullish position (longs) ascending by 6,819 contracts to a weekly total of 479,000 contracts compared to the gross bearish position (shorts) which saw a decline by -18,934 contracts for the week to a total of 165,033 contracts.

Speculative crude oil bets had fallen for two straight weeks before the February 19th turnaround and brought the net bullish standing back over the +300,000 contract level. Over the past year, speculative positions peaked on January 30, 2018 with a total net position of 739,097 contracts before slowly seeing a paring of bets that have brought the current levels to under half of that total.

WTI Crude Oil Commercial Positions:

The commercial traders position, hedgers or traders engaged in buying and selling for business purposes, totaled a net position of -322,423 contracts on the week. This was a weekly fall of -23,495 contracts from the total net of -298,928 contracts reported the previous week.

WTI Crude Oil Futures:

Over the same weekly reporting time-frame, from Tuesday to Tuesday, the WTI Crude Oil Futures (Front Month) closed at approximately $56.45 which was a rise of $3.35 from the previous close of $53.10, according to unofficial market data.

*COT Report: The COT data, released weekly to the public each Friday, is updated through the most recent Tuesday (data is 3 days old) and shows a quick view of how large speculators or non-commercials (for-profit traders) as well as the commercial traders (hedgers & traders for business purposes) were positioned in the futures markets.

The CFTC categorizes trader positions according to commercial hedgers (traders who use futures contracts for hedging as part of the business), non-commercials (large traders who speculate to realize trading profits) and nonreportable traders (usually small traders/speculators).

Find CFTC criteria here: (http://www.cftc.gov/MarketReports/CommitmentsofTraders/ExplanatoryNotes/index.htm).

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