Details Cookies
Hong Kong S.A.R
Cookie policy

This website uses cookies to offer you a better browsing experience by enabling, optimising and analysing site operations, as well as to provide personalised ad content and allow you to connect to social media. By choosing “Accept all” you consent to the use of cookies and the related processing of personal data. Select “Manage consent” to manage your consent preferences. You can change your preferences or retract your consent at any time via the cookie policy page. Please view our cookie policy here and our privacy policy here

COT: Commodity demand remains strong despite growing uncertainty COT: Commodity demand remains strong despite growing uncertainty COT: Commodity demand remains strong despite growing uncertainty

COT: Commodity demand remains strong despite growing uncertainty

Ole Hansen

Head of Commodity Strategy

Summary:  Our weekly Commitment of Traders update highlights future positions and changes made by hedge funds and other speculators across commodities and forex during the week to Tuesday, April 18. A week that saw some additional dollar weakness, rising stocks and rising US yields as rate cut expectations continued to moderate. In commodities, demand from managed money accounts remained strong with 24 out of 28 major commodity futures tracked in this seeing net buying, led by crude oil, copper, platinum and soybeans

Saxo Bank publishes weekly Commitment of Traders reports (COT) covering leveraged fund positions in commodities while in forex we use the broader measure called non-commercial.
What is the Commitments of Traders report?

The COT reports are issued by the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and the ICE Exchange Europe for Brent crude oil and gas oil. They are released every Friday after the U.S. close with data from the week ending the previous Tuesday. They break down the open interest in futures markets into different groups of users depending on the asset class.

Commodities: Producer/Merchant/Processor/User, Swap dealers, Managed Money and other
Financials: Dealer/Intermediary; Asset Manager/Institutional; Leveraged Funds and other
Forex: A broad breakdown between commercial and non-commercial (speculators)

The reasons why we focus primarily on the behavior of the highlighted groups are:

  • They are likely to have tight stops and no underlying exposure that is being hedged
  • This makes them most reactive to changes in fundamental or technical price developments
  • It provides views about major trends but also helps to decipher when a reversal is looming


Global Market Quick Take Europe
Saxo Market Call Daily Podcast

This summary highlights futures positions and changes made by hedge funds across commodities and forex during the week to last Tuesday, April 18. A week that saw some additional dollar weakness, rising stocks and rising US yields as rate cut expectations continued to moderate.

Commodity sector:

The Bloomberg Commodity Index added 1.5% to trade higher for a fourth, led by broad gains across all sectors. Gains were led by a recovering grains sector and industrial metals while the energy and precious metals saw moderate gains. Across the 24 major commodity futures tracked in this update, all but four contracts saw net buying led by crude oil, copper, platinum, soybeans and corn. Overall the net long rose 146k lots to 1.33 million, an eight week high, and representing a notional value of $111 billion.

Crude oil: Despite some emerging price weakness that accelerated last Wednesday, the day after the reporting week ended, the buying of crude oil extended to a third week. The total net long in WTI and Brent rose 21.9k lots to 454k lots. Fresh longs drove the bulk (93%) of this increase, but they were left vulnerable to the correction that followed. This concluded a five-week roundtrip that saw a combine 232k lots of WTI and Brent being sold as the banking crisis drove a technical-driven sell-off before OPEC+ production cuts supported a 213k lots reversal.

For natural gas, the attempt to rally from the current $2 floor has been so far futile. However, it helped support a reversal of the positions held across four Henry Hub deliverable swaps and futures contracts to the first net-long in ten months. The combination of a year-to-date decline of around 50% and an elevated contango, which favors those holding short positions, has been a major obstacle preventing a sustained recovery.

Gold: A second week of net selling, this time primarily driven by an increase in the gross short following the failure to break above $2050, saw the net long reduced by 3.3k lots to 134k lots. The total 10.7k lots net reduction seen during the past two weeks, however, remain very small compared with the 121k lots that was added in the month that followed the banking crisis. Highlighting a market that would need to see and even bigger correction in order to trigger any forced long liquidation, a risk that remains relatively small as long gold holds above support in the $1955-60 area.

Platinum: Speculators responded to a 9% rally and a significant narrowing of the discount to gold by lifting the platinum net-long by a substantial 12.8k lots to 18.4k lots. This is the biggest one-week addition of length since September 2019. The change was driven by equal measures of fresh longs and short covering, and it highlights a metal that up until now has been under-owned as investors instead focused on gold and silver. The continued momentum last week continued to yield fresh longs, not least on Friday when the closed at $1127, a 13-month high. In the short-term developments that may raise the risk of pullback should the technical and/or fundamental outlook turn less bullish.

HG Copper: In response to the upside break during the reporting week, and which later on failed, the copper long jumped 230% to 19.8k lots. This highlights a market where traders are worried about missing the upside once it materializes, but also how failure turns to immediate long liquidation and with that, fresh price weakness as seen last Thursday and especially Friday. For now, the metal remains rangebound, having returned to the center of its current $3.8 to $4.2 trading range. However, with global visible exchange monitored stocks at the lowest seasonal level since 2008, the downside risks in our opinion remain limited.

Grains: Flows were mostly positive, with buying seen across all but one of the five major grain and oilseed contracts tracked in this update. Buying was concentrated in soybeans and corn, while small wheat buying was seen before the largest decline in a month. This occurred as Ukraine resumed grain shipments through the Black Sea corridor after a two-day halt, thereby supporting those holding the biggest CBOT wheat short in five years.

Softs: Broad buying extended to a fourth week, with length being added to the four contracts tracked in this update. The largest increase was in the Arabica coffee net long, which jumped 54% to 33.6k lots, and a halving of the cotton net short to 7.3k lots.


In forex, speculators were net sellers of the dollar for a fourth week running, resulting in a 15% increase in the gross short versus nine IMM futures and the Dollar Index to $11 billion, a nine-week high. The most notable flow involving selling of the greenback was short covering in CAD and CHF, while the GBP net flipped to a small net-long for the first time in fourteen months.


The Saxo Bank Group entities each provide execution-only service and access to Analysis permitting a person to view and/or use content available on or via the website is not intended to and does not change or expand on this. Such access and use are at all times subject to (i) The Terms of Use; (ii) Full Disclaimer; (iii) The Risk Warning; (iv) the Rules of Engagement and (v) Notices applying to Saxo News & Research and/or its content in addition (where relevant) to the terms governing the use of hyperlinks on the website of a member of the Saxo Bank Group by which access to Saxo News & Research is gained. Such content is therefore provided as no more than information. In particular no advice is intended to be provided or to be relied on as provided nor endorsed by any Saxo Bank Group entity; nor is it to be construed as solicitation or an incentive provided to subscribe for or sell or purchase any financial instrument. All trading or investments you make must be pursuant to your own unprompted and informed self-directed decision. As such no Saxo Bank Group entity will have or be liable for any losses that you may sustain as a result of any investment decision made in reliance on information which is available on Saxo News & Research or as a result of the use of the Saxo News & Research. Orders given and trades effected are deemed intended to be given or effected for the account of the customer with the Saxo Bank Group entity operating in the jurisdiction in which the customer resides and/or with whom the customer opened and maintains his/her trading account. Saxo News & Research 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. To the extent that any content is construed as investment research, you must note and accept that the 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 under relevant laws.

Please read our disclaimers:
- Notification on Non-Independent Investment Research (
- Full disclaimer (

Saxo Capital Markets HK Limited
19th Floor
Shanghai Commercial Bank Tower
12 Queen’s Road Central
Hong Kong

Contact Saxo

Select region

Hong Kong S.A.R
Hong Kong S.A.R

Saxo Capital Markets HK is a company authorised and regulated by the Securities and Futures Commission of Hong Kong. Saxo Capital Markets HK Limited holds a Type 1 Regulated Activity (Dealing in securities); Type 2 Regulated Activity (Dealing in Futures Contract); Type 3 Regulated Activity (Leveraged foreign exchange trading); Type 4 Regulated Activity (Advising on securities) and Type 9 Regulated Activity (Asset Management) licenses (CE No. AVD061). Registered address: 19th Floor, Shanghai Commercial Bank Tower, 12 Queen’s Road Central, Hong Kong

By clicking on certain links on this site, you are aware and agree to leave the website of Saxo Capital Markets, proceed on to the linked site managed by Saxo Group and where you will be subject to the terms of that linked site.

Apple, iPad and iPhone are trademarks of Apple Inc., registered in the US and other countries. AppStore is a service mark of Apple Inc.

Please note that the information on this site and any product and services we offer are not targeted at investors residing in the United States and Japan, and are not intended for distribution to, or use by any person in any country or jurisdiction where such distribution or use would be contrary to local law or regulation. Please click here to view our full disclaimer.