WTI Crude Oil Speculators dropped their bullish bets to a 12-week low

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WTI Crude Oil Non-Commercial Speculator Positions:

Large energy speculators decreased 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 532,569 contracts in the data reported through Tuesday July 28th. This was a weekly decline of -16,307 net contracts from the previous week which had a total of 548,876 net contracts.

The week’s net position was the result of the gross bullish position (longs) falling by -11,088 contracts (to a weekly total of 676,822 contracts) while the gross bearish position (shorts) advanced by 5,219 contracts for the week (to a total of 144,253 contracts).

Crude Oil speculators cut back on their bullish bets this week for the first time in three weeks. The decline marked the biggest shortfall in a month and brought the overall bullish level to the lowest point in the past twelve weeks, dating back to May 5th. Despite the decrease this week, the overall bullish position remains above the +500,000 net contract level for a sixteenth consecutive week. This marks the best streak for bullish bets since the summer and fall of 2018.

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 -564,457 contracts on the week. This was a weekly rise of 14,199 contracts from the total net of -578,656 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 $41.04 which was a shortfall of $-0.92 from the previous close of $41.96, 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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