September 14, 2018 / 9:06 PM / 2 months ago

UPDATE 1-Speculators pare net long US dollar bets to lowest since mid-July -CFTC, Reuters

 (Adds details on dollar positioning, analyst comment, table,
graphic, byline)
    By Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss
    NEW YORK, Sept 14 (Reuters) - Speculators' net long bets on
the U.S. dollar fell to the lowest since mid-July, according to
calculations by Reuters and Commodity Futures Trading Commission
data released on Friday.
    The value of the net long dollar position was $19.16 billion
in the week ended Sept. 11, down from $20.60 billion the
previous week. Speculators have been net long dollars for 13
straight weeks, after being net short for 48 consecutive weeks.
    Net long U.S. dollar positioning has also declined for three
straight weeks.
    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 wider 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 of $20.796 billion in the week ended Sept. 11,
from $22.14 billion a week earlier.
    Investors continued to pare back extreme long dollar
positioning that in recent weeks had hit the highest since
January 2017.
    The dollar had benefited from expectations of higher
interest rates as well as the escalation of global trade
tensions involving the United States, China, Canada and the
European Union.
    But easing trade tensions between China and the United
States as well as encouraging developments between Britain and
the European Union on the terms for Britain's exit from the
economic bloc has reduced safe-haven demand for the dollar.
    Since mid-August, the dollar index has declined 2.7 percent.
    Bloomberg reported on Friday though that U.S. President
Donald Trump has instructed aides to proceed with tariffs on
about $200 billion more in Chinese products, despite Treasury
Secretary Steven Mnuchin's attempts to restart talks with China
about resolving the trade war.
    That has boosted the dollar index on Friday, trading up 0.5
percent on the day at 94.954
    The CFTC report also showed that the major positioning
changes were in the euro, with net longs increasing; sterling,
whose net shorts fell; and the Swiss franc, with its net short
also declining.
    In the cryptocurrency market, speculators' net short
position on bitcoin Cboe futures dropped to a record low of
-1,239 contracts from net shorts of -1,368
contracts the previous week, data showed.
    Bitcoin on Friday rose 0.7 percent to $6,528.71
on the Bitstamp platform. It cleared the $7,000 hurdle in late
August, but has since declined from that level.
    So far this year bitcoin has plunged 53 percent, after
soaring more than 1,300 percent in 2017.
    Nigel Green, founder and chief executive officer of deVere
Group, which launched a cryptocurrency exchange, said the
broader crypto market remains in bear territory. He added that
investors should look at the bigger picture and see potential
buying opportunities in other digital currencies. 
    "There's no doubt in my mind that in today's digitalized,
globalized world, the demand for digital, global currencies in
some form – whether it be the biggest ones of today or not – is
only set to grow," Green said. 
    
Japanese Yen (Contracts of 12,500,000 yen) 
 $6.035 billion
         11 Sep 2018            Prior week
         week             
 Long             48,057            47,572
 Short           101,943            99,504
 Net             -53,886           -51,932
 
EURO (Contracts of 125,000 euros)
 $-1.62 billion
         11 Sep 2018            Prior week
         week             
 Long            164,639           173,335
 Short           153,469           165,372
 Net              11,170             7,963
 
POUND STERLING (Contracts of 62,500 pounds sterling)
 $4.983 billion
         11 Sep 2018           Prior week
         week             
 Long             65,982           64,040
 Short           127,161          133,653
 Net             -61,179          -69,613
 
SWISS FRANC (Contracts of 125,000 Swiss francs)
 $4.546 billion
         11 Sep 2018           Prior week
         week             
 Long              7,676            7,973
 Short            43,026           48,367
 Net             -35,350          -40,394
 
CANADIAN DOLLAR (Contracts of 100,000 Canadian dollars)
 $2.062 billion
         11 Sep 2018           Prior week
         week             
 Long             30,506           34,748
 Short            57,448           61,055
 Net             -26,942          -26,307
 
AUSTRALIAN DOLLAR (Contracts of 100,000 Aussie dollars)
 $3.156 billion 
         11 Sep 2018           Prior week
         week             
 Long             48,230           31,772
 Short            92,542           75,803
 Net             -44,312          -44,031
 
MEXICAN PESO (Contracts of 500,000 pesos)
 $-0.379 billion
         11 Sep 2018           Prior week
         week             
 Long            101,282          103,856
 Short            86,746           91,337
 Net              14,536           12,519
 
NEW ZEALAND DOLLAR (Contracts of 100,000 New Zealand dollars)
 $1.477 billion 
         11 Sep 2018           Prior week
         week             
 Long             19,408           16,291
 Short            42,055           41,185
 Net             -22,647          -24,894
 
    
 (Reporting by Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss; Additional reporting by
Saqib Iqbal Ahmed; Editing by Susan Thomas and Meredith
Mazzilli)
  
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