According to the CFTC Commitments of Traders report for the week ended April 30, NET LENGTH for crude oil futures plunged -23 256 contracts to 524 103 for the week. Speculative long positions fell -6 372 contracts while shorts rose +16 884. For refined oil products, NET LENGTH for gasoline gained +1 441 contracts to 97 718, while NET SHORT for heating oil fell -2 118 contracts to 12 670 contracts for the week. NET SHORT for natural gas futures jumped +14 053 contracts to 69 129 contracts for the week. Nymex natural gas price recovered during the week but stayed around the lowest level in 3 years.
Traders bet precious metals to go higher (betting US Treasury yield to drop) ahead of the May FOMC meeting. This was also driven by comments from some officials that the Fed could consider technical rate cut if weak inflation lingers. NET LENGTH for gold futures soared +28 824 contracts, to 66 219 last week. Speculative long positions slipped -584 contracts, while shorts plunged -28 240, resulting in a sharp rise in NET LENGTH. For silver futures, speculative long positions rebounded +1 231 contracts while shorts dipped -1 015. These resulted in a return to NET LENGTH of 2 136 contracts. For PGMs, NET LENGTH of Nymex platinum futures gained +2 242 contracts to 33 322 while that for palladium added +467 contracts to 9 408.