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UPDATE 1-Euro net shorts rise to highest since mid-March -CFTC, Reuters data
April 21, 2017 / 8:41 PM / 4 months ago

UPDATE 1-Euro net shorts rise to highest since mid-March -CFTC, Reuters data

 (New throughout, adds details on the contracts, analyst
comments, table; adds byline)
    By Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss
    NEW YORK, April 21 (Reuters) - Net short positioning on the
euro increased to its largest since mid-March, according to
calculations by Reuters and Commodity Futures Trading Commission
data released on Friday, as speculators braced for the outcome
of French elections over the weekend.
    The first round of France's presidential election kicks off
on Sunday, with polls suggesting the race will likely come down
to a second-round duel between independent centrist Emmanuel
Macron and Marine Le Pen, head of the anti-European Union and
anti-immigrant National Front.
    Euro's net short contracts rose to 21,649 in the week ended
April 18, from 18,956, data showed.
    "Our base-case scenario for these elections is for a
euro-friendly outcome, with the final race taking place between
Macron and Le Pen," said Thomas Flury, a strategist at UBS'
wealth management research in Switzerland.
    "However, we note that the odds of a euro-unfriendly outcome
have risen," he added. Flury believes, however, that the euro's
downside against the dollar remains well-protected as it has
been in recent quarters."
    Speculators, meanwhile, lifted bullish bets on the U.S.
dollar for a second straight week.
    The value of the dollar's net long position totaled $15.34 
billion, up from $15.04 billion the previous week. 
    The dollar has held up against the yen this week in the face
of weakening consumer spending, inflation and manufacturing
data, although it struggled against European currencies.
    "The general resilience of the dollar can be attributed to
the complacency of investors who believe that the recent
disappointments in U.S. data changes nothing about the outlook
for U.S. monetary policy," said Kathy Lien, managing director of
FX strategy at BK Asset Management in New York.
    CFTC data also showed that sterling net short contracts fell
to their lowest since early March.
    Sterling has been well-supported this week after British
Prime Minister Theresa May surprised markets by calling for an
early parliamentary election in June.
    Investors viewed the election as easing political
uncertainty and making it more likely that Britain could
maintain some kind of preferential access to the single European
market.
    The Reuters calculation for the aggregate U.S. dollar
position is derived from net positions of International Monetary
Market speculators in the yen, euro, British pound, Swiss franc
and Canadian and Australian dollars.

Japanese Yen (Contracts of 12,500,000 yen) 
 $3.513 billion
         April 18, 2017         Prior week
         week             
 Long             45,761            43,316
 Short            76,224            78,080
 Net             -30,463           -34,764
 
EURO (Contracts of 125,000 euros)
 $2.904 billion
         April 18, 2017         Prior week
         week             
 Long            185,786           173,594
 Short           207,435           192,550
 Net             -21,649           -18,956
 
POUND STERLING (Contracts of 62,500 pounds sterling)
 $7.982 billion
         April 18, 2017        Prior week
         week             
 Long             48,348           31,871
 Short           147,838          137,772
 Net             -99,490         -105,901
 
SWISS FRANC (Contracts of 125,000 Swiss francs)
 $1.732 billion
         April 18, 2017        Prior week
         week             
 Long             10,830           13,107
 Short            24,632           23,235
 Net             -13,802          -10,128
 
CANADIAN DOLLAR (Contracts of 100,000 Canadian dollars)
 $2.486 billion
         April 18, 2017        Prior week
         week             
 Long             37,306           31,432
 Short            70,558           63,766
 Net             -33,252          -32,334
 
AUSTRALIAN DOLLAR (Contracts of 100,000 Aussie dollars)
 $-3.271 billion 
         April 18, 2017        Prior week
         week             
 Long             70,392           76,747
 Short            27,130           31,596
 Net              43,262           45,151
 
MEXICAN PESO (Contracts of 500,000 pesos)
 $-0.383 billion
         April 18, 2017        Prior week
         week             
 Long             97,027           86,813
 Short            82,783           99,488
 Net              14,244          -12,675
 
NEW ZEALAND DOLLAR (Contracts of 100,000 New Zealand dollars)
 $1.057 billion 
         April 18, 2017        Prior week
         week             
 Long             18,320           19,008
 Short            33,326           34,161
 Net             -15,006          -15,153
 
 (Reporting by Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss, Editing by G Crosse and
David Gregorio)
  

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