Speculators Raise US Dollar Bearish Bets Last Week

US Dollar Index Speculator Positions

Large currency speculators raised their bearish net positions in the US Dollar Index futures markets this week, according to the latest Commitment of Traders (COT) data released by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) on Friday.

USD Index COT Futures Large Traders Positions

The non-commercial futures contracts of US Dollar Index futures, traded by large speculators and hedge funds, totaled a net position of -8,240 contracts in the data reported through Tuesday September 15th. This was a weekly change of -2,482 contracts from the previous week which had a total of -5,758 net contracts.

The week’s net position was the result of the gross bullish position (longs) sliding by -97 contracts (to a weekly total of 13,356 contracts) compared to the gross bearish position (shorts) which rose by 2,385 contracts on the week (to a total of 21,596 contracts).

The US Dollar Index speculators increased their bearish bets following two weeks of lower bearish positions. This week’s rise marks the largest one-week bearish gain since June 16th when bearish bets jumped by -10,033 contracts. The USD has now been in bearish territory for thirteen straight weeks. Overall, the current dollar net speculator position has dropped to the most bearish standing since November 28th of 2017, a span of 146 weeks.

Inpidual Currencies Data this week:

In the other major currency contracts data, we saw four substantial changes (+ or – 10,000 contracts) in the speculators category this week.

Euro speculator positions dropped sharply this week by over -18,000 contracts and have fallen by a total of -33,176 contracts in the past three weeks. Euro positions had risen to an all-time record high of +211,752 contracts just four weeks ago before retreating lower. Despite the pullback, the current level remains highly bullish for speculator sentiment.

British pound sterling bets fell sharply by over -10,000 contracts this week after a couple of rising weeks. This week’s decline brings the current standing to a small bullish position at just +2,293 contracts. The GBP speculator standing has now remained in bullish territory for the fifth straight week after turning bullish on August 18th.

Australian dollar speculator positions jumped this week by over +18,000 contracts and brought the overall net position back into a bullish standing. This week’s gain was the largest one-week increase since June and pushed the overall net position to the most bullish standing of the past 130 weeks, dating all the way back to March 20th of 2018.

Mexican peso positions also jumped this week by over +18,000 contracts. The peso bullish bets have risen for three straight weeks and have pushed the net position to the most bullish level in twenty-six weeks, dating back to March 17th. Peso positions have now been in bullish territory for fourteen straight weeks after falling into negative sentiment back in May and June.

Overall, the major currencies that saw improving speculator positions this week were the Japanese yen (1,147 weekly change in contracts), Swiss franc (539 contracts), Canadian dollar (412 contracts), Australian dollar (18,263 contracts), and the Mexican peso (18,098 contracts).

The currencies whose speculative bets declined this week were the US dollar index (-2,482 weekly change in contracts), euro (-18,238 contracts), British pound sterling (-10,437 contracts) and the New Zealand dollar (-1,658 contracts).

Chart: Current Strength of Each Currency compared to their 3-Year Range

Current Strength Of Each Currency

The above chart depicts each currency’s current speculator strength level compared to data of the past 3 years. A score of 0 percent would mean speculator bets are currently at the lowest level of the past three years. A 100 percent score would be at the highest level while a 50 percent score would mean speculator bets are right in the middle of the data (a neutral score). We use above 80 percent (extreme bullish) and below 20 percent (extreme bearish) as extreme score measurements.

Please see the data table and inpidual currency charts below.

Table of Large Speculator Levels & Weekly Changes:

Table Of Large Speculator Levels & Weekly Changes

This latest COT data is through Tuesday and shows a quick view of how large speculators or non-commercials (for-profit traders) 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

EuroFX:

Euro COT Futures Large Traders Positions

The Euro large speculator standing this week recorded a net position of 178,576 contracts in the data reported through Tuesday. This was a weekly decrease of -18,238 contracts from the previous week which had a total of 196,814 net contracts.

British Pound Sterling:

GBP COT Futures Large Traders Positions

The large British pound sterling speculator level equaled a net position of 2,293 contracts in the data reported this week. This was a weekly lowering of -10,437 contracts from the previous week which had a total of 12,730 net contracts.

Japanese Yen:

JPY COT Futures Large Traders Positions

Large Japanese yen speculators came in at a net position of 22,889 contracts in this week’s data. This was a weekly lift of 1,147 contracts from the previous week which had a total of 21,742 net contracts.

Swiss Franc:

CHF COT Futures Large Traders Positions

The Swiss franc speculator standing this week resulted in a net position of 12,066 contracts in the data through Tuesday. This was a weekly lift of 539 contracts from the previous week which had a total of 11,527 net contracts.

Canadian Dollar:

CAD COT Futures Large Traders Positions

Canadian dollar speculators resulted in a net position of -16,943 contracts this week. This was a increase of 412 contracts from the previous week which had a total of -17,355 net contracts.

Australian Dollar:

AUD COT Futures Large Traders Positions

The large speculator positions in Australian dollar futures came in at a net position of 16,219 contracts this week in the data ending Tuesday. This was a weekly rise of 18,263 contracts from the previous week which had a total of -2,044 net contracts.

New Zealand Dollar:

NZD COT Futures Large Traders Positions

The New Zealand dollar speculative standing equaled a net position of 3,242 contracts this week in the latest COT data. This was a weekly lowering of -1,658 contracts from the previous week which had a total of 4,900 net contracts.

Mexican Peso:

MXN COT Futures Large Traders Positions

Mexican peso speculators recorded a net position of 26,471 contracts this week. This was a weekly rise of 18,098 contracts from the previous week which had a total of 8,373 net contracts.

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