WTI Crude Oil Speculators edged their bullish bets higher for 2nd week

May 23, 2020

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WTI Crude Oil Non-Commercial Speculator Positions:

Large energy speculators continued to raise their bullish net positions in the WTI Crude Oil 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 WTI Crude Oil futures, traded by large speculators and hedge funds, totaled a net position of 543,603 contracts in the data reported through Tuesday May 19th. This was a weekly gain of 2,584 net contracts from the previous week which had a total of 541,019 net contracts.

The week’s net position was the result of the gross bullish position (longs) lowering by -17,540 contracts (to a weekly total of 692,017 contracts) while the gross bearish position (shorts) fell by a greater amount of -20,124 contracts for the week (to a total of 148,414 contracts).

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The crude oil speculative net positions gained for a second straight week and for the sixth time out of the past seven weeks. Speculators have now added a total of +108,495 bullish contracts in just the past seven weeks. These recent gains have kept the overall bullish standing very strong with total bullish positions above the +500,000 net contract level for a sixth consecutive week.

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 -574,955 contracts on the week. This was a weekly drop of -16,984 contracts from the total net of -557,971 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 $31.96 which was a rise of $6.18 from the previous close of $25.78, 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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