November 16, 2018 / 9:46 PM / 6 months ago

UPDATE 1-Speculators cut net long U.S. dollar bets in latest week -CFTC, Reuters

 (Adds details, comment, byline, bitcoin futures)
    By Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss
    NEW YORK, Nov 16 (Reuters) - Speculators trimmed net long
bets on the U.S. dollar in the latest week, according to
calculations by Reuters and Commodity Futures Trading Commission
data released on Friday.
    The value of the net long dollar position totaled $27.11
billion in the week ended Nov. 13, down from $28.66 billion the
previous week. Speculators were net long on dollars for the 22nd
straight week, after being short for 48 consecutive weeks.
    Net long dollar bets have fallen in three of the last five
    U.S. dollar positioning was derived from net contracts of
International Monetary Market speculators in the yen, euro,
British pound, Swiss franc and Canadian and Australian dollars.
    In a broader measure of dollar positioning that
includes net contracts on the New Zealand dollar, Mexican peso,
Brazilian real and Russian ruble, the U.S. dollar posted a net
long position valued at $27.895 billion, compared with $29.951
billion a week earlier.
    One of the factors that have driven the dollar's
outperformance this year - the higher interest rate outlook -
has been fading.
    Recent comments from U.S. Federal Reserve officials have
been modestly dovish.
    Fed Vice Chair Richard Clarida on Friday said U.S. interest
rates are nearing their neutral levels, suggesting the U.S.
central bank's tightening cycle may be ending soon.
    Fed Chairman Jerome Powell on Wednesday and Dallas Fed
President Robert Kaplan were similarly less upbeat, citing
slowing global growth as a headwind to the U.S. economy.
    Kathy Lien, managing director of FX strategy at BK Asset
Management in New York, said the Fed is still expected to raise
interest rates next month, despite the concerns, but that rate
hike could be accompanied by a less hawkish outlook.
    In the cryptocurrency market, speculators' net short
position on bitcoin Cboe futures totaled -1,185 contracts
 in the latest week, from -1,221 contracts the
previous week, data showed.
    Bitcoin on Friday was down 1.6 percent at $5,497.93
 on the Bitstamp platform. It fell below a key $6,000
support level two days earlier and hit a one-year low on
Thursday in what has been a prolonged market slump that began
early this year.
    So far this year, bitcoin is down more than 60 percent after
soaring over 1,300 percent in 2017. 
    "To put it plainly, the dip is likely indicative of the fact
that the most recent round of crypto speculators are
capitulating," said Marshall Hayner, founder of payments company
Metal Pay.
    "Thanks to revised short-term expectations that call into
question the idea of a bull run by the end of the year, many are
likely taking their chips off the table."
Japanese Yen (Contracts of 12,500,000 yen) 
 $11.236 billion
         Nov. 13, 2018          Prior week
 Long             40,192            33,060
 Short           142,486           122,182
 Net            -102,294           -89,122
EURO (Contracts of 125,000 euros)
 $5.224 billion
         Nov. 13, 2018          Prior week
 Long            161,860           148,973
 Short           198,879           195,816
 Net             -37,019           -46,843
POUND STERLING (Contracts of 62,500 pounds sterling)
 $3.819 billion
         Nov. 13, 2018         Prior week
 Long             38,606           31,670
 Short            85,713           88,469
 Net             -47,107          -56,799
SWISS FRANC (Contracts of 125,000 Swiss francs)
 $2.31 billion
         Nov. 13, 2018         Prior week
 Long             15,841           16,747
 Short            34,443           36,695
 Net             -18,602          -19,948
CANADIAN DOLLAR (Contracts of 100,000 Canadian dollars)
 $0.211 billion
         Nov. 13, 2018         Prior week
 Long             36,773           33,753
 Short            39,564           36,385
 Net              -2,791           -2,632
AUSTRALIAN DOLLAR (Contracts of 100,000 Aussie dollars)
 $4.314 billion 
         Nov. 13, 2018         Prior week
 Long             18,800           20,825
 Short            78,580           87,270
 Net             -59,780          -66,445
MEXICAN PESO (Contracts of 500,000 pesos)
 $-0.178 billion
         Nov. 13, 2018         Prior week
 Long             69,888           67,588
 Short            62,601           60,552
 Net               7,287            7,036
NEW ZEALAND DOLLAR (Contracts of 100,000 New Zealand dollars)
 $1.411 billion 
         Nov. 13, 2018         Prior week
 Long             11,138           10,434
 Short            32,006           36,160
 Net             -20,868          -25,726
 (Reporting by Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss; editing by David
Gregorio and G Crosse)
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