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CFTC Commitments of Traders – Bets on Lower British Pound Rose on Disappointing UK Data

As suggested in the CFTC Commitments of Traders report in the week ended April 21, NET LENGTH in USD Index added +259 contracts to 15 616. Speculative long positions gained +989 contracts and short positions added +723 contracts. Concerning European currencies, NET LENGTH in EUR futures rose +601 contracts to 87 218. NET SHORT for GBP futures drifted to NET SHORT of 1 380 contracts for the week. Data released during the week revealed weakness in the economy. Rightmove house price gained +2.1% y/y in April, down from +3.5% a month ago. On monthly basis, house price contracted -0.2%. On the job market, the ILO unemployment rate increased +0.1 percentage point to 4% in the three months through to February, compared with consensus of 3.9%. This has not yet reflected the impact. Claimant’s report showed that the number of unemployed increased +12.1K in March , better than consensus of 172.5K addition. Headline CPI moderated to +1.5% y/y in March, from +1.7% a month ago. Core inflation slipped to +1.6%, compared with February’s +1.7%. Both came in inline with consensus. Moderation in inflation has offered BOE flexibility to add monetary stimulus if needed. On safe-haven currencies, NET LENGTH on CHF futures added +267 contracts to 4 924. NET LENGTH on JPY futures jumped +3 383 contracts to 26 026. On commodity currencies, NET SHORT for AUD futures slipped -734 contracts to 34 820. Speculative long positions dropped -585 contracts while declined -1 319 contracts. Separately, NET SHORT for NZD futures dipped -319 contracts to 14 259 during the week while NET SHORT for CAD futures added +131 contracts to 23 891.

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