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FX Speculators sharply raised bearish US Dollar bets. JPY,GBP,AUD,NZD bets jump

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US Dollar net speculator positions fell to $-21.99 billion this week

The latest data for the weekly Commitment of Traders (COT) report, released by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) on Friday, showed that large traders and currency speculators sharply increased their bearish bets for the US dollar this week.

Non-commercial large futures traders, including hedge funds and large speculators, had an overall US dollar net position totaling $-21.99 billion as of Tuesday March 20th, according to the latest data from the CFTC and dollar amount calculations by Reuters. This was a weekly decline of $-7.38 billion from the $-14.61 billion total position that was registered the previous week, according to the Reuters calculation (totals of the US dollar contracts against the combined contracts of the euro, British pound, Japanese yen, Australian dollar, Canadian dollar and the Swiss franc).

The aggregate speculator position saw the largest one decline since June 14th 2016 when the position fell by $-8.58 billion.

Weekly Speculator Contract Changes:

This week saw six substantial changes (+ or – 10,000 contracts) in the individual currency contracts for the speculator category.

The Euro speculative positions dropped by over -13,000 net contracts this week after gaining by over +13,000 last week. The eurofx position is still remains in a strongly bullish level.

The Japanese yen positions jumped by over +57,000 contracts this week as speculators sharply bailed out of their bearish positions. Spec positions are at the lowest bearish level since November 2016.

British pound sterling positions rose by over +15,000 contracts this week with positive news out of Brexit negotiations and the GBP level is at the highest bullish position in six weeks.

Australian and New Zealand dollar bets both rose by over +18,000 contracts, respectively. Both currencies saw their speculative positions surge out of last week’s bearish positions to new bullish levels this week.

Mexican peso positions were on the downside and fell by over -20,000 contracts. The decline saw peso positions drop below the +80,000 contract level for the first time in eight weeks.

Overall, the major currencies that improved against the US dollar this week were the British pound sterling (15,780 contracts), Japanese yen (57,540 contracts), Canadian dollar (5,140 contracts), Australian dollar (18,704 contracts) and the New Zealand dollar (22,442 contracts).

The currencies whose speculative bets declined this week versus the dollar were the euro (-13,641 weekly change in contracts), Swiss franc (-1,674 contracts) and the Mexican peso (-20,095 contracts).


Table of Weekly Commercial Traders and Speculators Levels & Changes:

Currency Net Commercials Comms Weekly Chg Net Speculators Specs Weekly Chg
EuroFx -168,540 9,523 132,739 -13,641
GBP -37,650 -16,117 23,807 15,780
JPY 17,403 -53,343 -21,999 57,540
CHF 10,877 3,656 -8,246 -1,674
CAD -21,744 1,408 24,560 5,140
AUD -13,950 -10,799 17,925 18,704
NZD -20,777 -22,003 19,626 22,442
MXN -69,766 20,863 66,845 -20,095


This latest COT data is through Tuesday 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. All currency positions are in direct relation to the US dollar where, for example, a bet for the euro is a bet that the euro will rise versus the dollar while a bet against the euro will be a bet that the dollar will gain versus the euro.


Weekly Charts: Large Trader Weekly Positions vs Price


British Pound Sterling:

Japanese Yen:

Swiss Franc:

Canadian Dollar:

Australian Dollar:

New Zealand Dollar:

Mexican Peso:

*COT Report: The weekly commitment of traders report summarizes the total trader positions for open contracts in the futures trading 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).

The Commitment of Traders report is published every Friday by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and shows futures positions data that was reported as of the previous Tuesday (3 days behind).

Each currency contract is a quote for that currency directly against the U.S. dollar, a net short amount of contracts means that more speculators are betting that currency to fall against the dollar and a net long position expect that currency to rise versus the dollar.

(The charts overlay the forex closing price of each Tuesday when COT trader positions are reported for each corresponding spot currency pair.) See more information and explanation on the weekly COT report from the CFTC website.

Article by CountingPips.com

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About Louie Lewis

Louie Lewis
Successful forex trading starts with you first. Then comes the actual strategies and techniques. I have been involved with forex and forex trading for a few years now. It is a wonderful way to build wealth. The learning never stops and I want to help others along their journey into this wonderful market of opportunity.

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