According to the CFTC Commitments of Traders report for the week ended December 18, NET LENGTH for crude oil futures climbed modestly higher as the decline in speculative short positions outweighed that in long positions. NET LENGTH added +102 contracts to 309 608 contracts for the week. Both crude oil benchmarks remained under pressure during the reporting week. The front-month WTI contract tumbled -10.47% while the Brent contract plunged -6.54%. For refined oil products, NET LENGTH for gasoline gained +2 228 contracts to 79 366, while NET SHORT for heating oil gained +4 148 contracts to 8 087 contracts for the week. The front-month Nymex contract for gasoline declined -6.2% while heating oil was down -5.05%. NET LENGTH for natural gas futures declined -7 621 contracts to 15 263 contracts for the week. Yet, bets for longs and shorts soared for the week. The Nymex contract dived -12.91% for the week.
On the precious metal complex, NET LENGTH for both gold and silver futures gained last week. for the former, speculative long positions jumped -12 568 contracts, while shorts slipped -2 893, resulting in an increase in NET LENGTH, by +15 461 contracts, to 75 960 contracts. The benchmark Comex contract added +0.59% during the week in concern. For silver futures, speculative long positions added +2 887 contracts while shorts dropped -5 688. These resulted in a rise in NET LENGTH, by +8 575 contracts, to 19 831 contracts. For PGMs, NET LENGTH of Nymex platinum futures added +396 contracts to 11 387 while that for palladium slid -442 contracts to 13 803.