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WTI Crude Oil Non-Commercial Positions:
Large speculators and traders sharply increased their net positions in the WTI crude oil futures markets last week following two weeks of modest declines, according to the latest Commitment of Traders (COT) data released by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) on Friday.
The non-commercial contracts of WTI crude futures, traded by large speculators and hedge funds, totaled a net position of 464,678 contracts in the data reported through January 17th. This was a weekly gain of 31,116 contracts from the previous week which had a total of 433,562 net contracts.
The weekly speculative gain pushed bets to the highest level since before 2012 and over the +400,000 net contract level for a sixth consecutive week.
WTI Crude Oil Commercial Positions:
The commercial traders position, categorized by the CFTC as hedgers or traders engaged in buying and selling for business purposes, totaled a net position of -482,371 contracts last week. This is a weekly fall of -16,971 contracts from the total net of -465,400 contracts reported the previous week.
USO Crude Oil ETF:
Over the same weekly reporting time-frame, from Tuesday to Tuesday, the USO Crude Oil ETF, which tracks the price of WTI crude oil, closed at approximately $11.43 which was a change of $0.36 from the previous close of $11.07, according to ETF market data.
*COT Report: The COT data, released weekly to the public each Friday, is updated through the previous 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).
Article by CountingPips.com