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WTI Crude Oil Non-Commercial Speculator Positions:
Large energy speculators reduced 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 624,213 contracts in the data reported through Tuesday January 2nd. This was a weekly decline of -7,948 contracts from the previous week which had a total of 632,161 net contracts.
Speculative bullish positions have been making record highs continuously over the past six weeks with last week’s +632,161 net contracts marking the new high before this week’s pullback. The spec position has now been over the +600,000 contract level for six consecutive weeks.
WTI Crude Oil Commercial Positions:
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Meanwhile, the commercial traders position, hedgers or traders engaged in buying and selling for business purposes, totaled a net position of -648,114 contracts on the week. This was a weekly fall of -3,845 contracts from the total net of -644,269 contracts reported the previous week.
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 $12.07 which was an uptick of $0.12 from the previous close of $11.95, 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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