VIX Speculators trim their bearish bets for 1st time in 7 weeks

July 27, 2019

July 27th – By CountingPips.comReceive our weekly COT Reports by Email

VIX Non-Commercial Speculator Positions:

Large volatility speculators pared their bearish net positions in the VIX futures markets this week, according to the latest Commitment of Traders (COT) data released by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) on Friday.

The non-commercial futures contracts of VIX futures, traded by large speculators and hedge funds, totaled a net position of -132,267 contracts in the data reported through Tuesday July 23rd. This was a weekly change of 9,530 net contracts from the previous week which had a total of -141,797 net contracts.

The week’s net position was the result of the gross bullish position (longs) going up by 6,239 contracts (to a weekly total of 120,035 contracts) while the gross bearish position (shorts) decreased by -3,291 contracts for the week (to a total of 252,302 contracts).


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Large speculators cooled off on their bearish sentiment this week after increasing bearish positions for six straight weeks through July 16th and for eight out of nine previous weeks dating back to May 21st.

Speculators have spent most of the first half of 2019 betting on lower volatility (raising bearish bets in 22 out of 29 weeks) after a surge in volatility into the end of 2018. Recently, speculators reached a record high bearish position on April 30th at -180,359 contracts, and despite a couple of pull backs after the record, specs seem ready to challenge those record levels again.

VIX Commercial Positions:

The commercial traders position, hedgers or traders engaged in buying and selling for business purposes, totaled a net position of 147,134 contracts on the week. This was a weekly loss of -4,150 contracts from the total net of 151,284 contracts reported the previous week.

VIX Futures:

Over the same weekly reporting time-frame, from Tuesday to Tuesday, the VIX Futures (Front Month) closed at approximately $14.77 which was a shortfall of $-0.55 from the previous close of $15.32, 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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