COMMODITIES 4 minutes to read

COT: Gold speculators turn bullish ahead of FOMC; Oil long drops further

Ole Hansen

Head of Commodity Strategy

Summary:  Hedge funds increased bullish commodity bets for a second week with precious metals and grains being the main contributors while crude oil and industrial metals were sold.


Saxo Bank publishes two weekly Commitment of Traders reports (COT) covering leveraged fund positions in commodities, bonds and stock index futures. For IMM currency futures and the VIX, we use the broader measure called non-commercial.

To download your copy of the Commitment of Traders: Commodities report for the week ending December 11, click here.


Enlarge

In crude oil, the relentless selling extending into an 11th week, albeit at a reduced pace. The combined net-long in Brent (+3.1k lots) and WTI (-8.6k lots) dropped to 256k lots, a three-year low. This occurred despite the Opec+ agreement to cut production over the coming months by 1.2 million barrels/day. The combined net-long – as per the chart below – is now more than 20% below the previous two lows in August 2016 and June 2017 from where crude oil rallied strongly on both occasions.

Enlarge
The gold position flipped to a net-long for the first time in five months. This came after funds cut longs by 8k lots and short positions by 20k lots. In the two weeks to November 11 funds bought 62k lots, mostly above $1,230/oz. While funds have moved towards a more bullish stance ahead of 2019 any additional dollar related weakness as seen on Friday could pose a short-term challenge.

Silver, meanwhile, had its net-short reduced to just 9k lots, as speculators turned the least bearish since July. 
 
Enlarge
Funds turned net-long in the grains sector after buying 71k lots, with the change being led by soybean oil (+13k) and corn (+45k). Speculators have not been net-long these three major crops in December since 2014. The cut-off time for this report occurred the day before soybeans temporarily spiked on news that China had resumed the purchase of US cargoes. 
Enlarge

In soft commodities funds added fresh Arabica coffee shorts as the bean suffered a sixth straight weekly decline, its longest losing streak since July. Signs of ample supply from Brazil and a weaker BRL supporting an elevated contango, which short-sellers attempts to benefit from.

Enlarge
Disclaimer

Saxo Capital Markets (Australia) Pty Ltd prepares and distributes information/research produced within the Saxo Bank Group for informational purposes only. In addition to the disclaimer below, if any general advice is provided, such advice does not take into account your individual objectives, financial situation or needs. You should consider the appropriateness of trading any financial instrument as trading can result in losses that exceed your initial investment. Please refer to our Analysis Disclaimer, and our Combined Financial Services Guide and Product Disclosure Statement. All legal documentation and disclaimers can be found at https://www.home.saxo/en-au/legal/.

The Saxo Bank Group entities each provide execution-only service. Access and use of Saxo News & Research and any Saxo Bank Group website are subject to (i) the Terms of Use; (ii) the full Disclaimer; and (iii) the Risk Warning in addition (where relevant) to the terms governing the use of the website of a member of the Saxo Bank Group.

Saxo News & Research is provided for informational purposes, does not contain (and should not be construed as containing) financial, investment, tax or trading advice or advice of any sort offered, recommended or endorsed by Saxo Bank Group and should not be construed as a record of our trading prices, or as an offer, incentive or solicitation for the subscription, sale or purchase in any financial instrument. No representation or warranty is given as to the accuracy or completeness of this information. All trading or investments you make must be pursuant to your own unprompted and informed self-directed decision. No Saxo Bank Group entity shall be liable for any losses that you may sustain as a result of any investment decision made in reliance on information on Saxo News & Research.

To the extent that any content is construed as investment research, such content was not intended to and has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research and as such, would be considered as a marketing communication.

Please read our disclaimers:
- Full Disclaimer (https://www.home.saxo/en-au/legal/disclaimer/saxo-disclaimer)
- Analysis Disclaimer (https://www.home.saxo/en-au/legal/analysis-disclaimer/saxo-analysis-disclaimer)
- Notification on Non-Independent Investment Research (https://www.home.saxo/legal/niird/notification)