Looking at this week’s Commitments of Trader’s Report, the biggest changes in speculator positions can be seen in the US dollar index, British pound, Canadian dollar and gold. “Risk on” currencies, such as the euro and the Australian dollar, remain unattractive relative to the US dollar. Even traditional safe haven assets, such as gold and the Swiss franc, are presently no match for the dollar. This week, speculators resumed adding to their long US dollar positions.

Looking at extremes in positioning, short British pound is a new bearish extreme looking at 12-month trailing averages. Net speculator positions in the US dollar, euro and gold continue to look extreme this week. Notably, speculator net positions in gold are now negative, implying that speculators (as a group) are now net short the precious metal. As the US dollar strengthens, the currency is leaving a trail of destruction in its wake.

The purpose of this weekly report is to track how the speculator community is positioned across various major currencies and commodities. When net long positions become crowded in either direction, we flag extended positioning as a risk. Crowded positions do not suggest an imminent reversal, but should be considered as a significant risk factor when investing in the same direction as the crowd. This is shown below:

CFTC COT speculator positions (futures & options combined) – August 7, 2018

Source: CFTC, MarketsNow

Notable extremes, significant changes in weekly positions, and large net positions as a proportion of open interest are highlighted in gray above. Extremes in net positions are highlighted when speculator positioning is more than two standard deviations above trailing 1-year and 3-year averages. Weekly changes are highlighted when they are significant as a proportion of open interest. Finally, net positions as a proportion of outstanding interest are highlighted when they are large relative to historical averages. 1-year and 3-year z-scores are visually represented below:

Print Friendly, PDF & Email