September 2, 2016 / 8:45 PM / a year ago

UPDATE 1-Speculators cut net long U.S. dollar bets to 8-week low -CFTC, Reuters

(Adds information on sterling, yen, analyst quote, table)
    By Dion Rabouin
    Sept 2 (Reuters) - Speculators reduced favorable bets on the
U.S. dollar for a fifth week in a row, cutting net long
positions to their lowest level since July 5. 
    Investors further cut the number of bets on the dollar as
they awaited Friday's release of the August U.S. jobs data,
which is a key factor for the Federal Reserve as it weighs its
monetary policy.
    The value of the dollar's net long position fell to $5.29
billion in the week ended Aug. 30, from $6.34 billion the
previous week, according to Reuters calculations and data from
the Commodity Futures Trading Commission released on Friday.
This week's net long position was the smallest in eight weeks.
    Traders have been taking fewer net dollar long positions in
recent weeks as U.S. data came out mostly mixed and markets eyed
this week's jobs report.
    To be long a contract means to bet that its value will
appreciate, while to be short means traders expect the value to
decrease.
    Sterling net short positions fell for the first time in
seven weeks, curbing net short contracts to 92,486. Last week,
speculators had raised short bets on the British pound to its
highest level ever for a sixth straight week.
    "Traders are getting more optimistic about the U.K. or at
least bailing out of their short pound positions on the back of
steady data," said Kathy Lien, managing director at BK Asset
Management in New York. "We probably saw that number decreasing
even further after the PMI numbers we had from the UK Thursday."
    British gross domestic product figures matched expectations
last week and earlier this week mortgage approvals and housing
price data both outperformed expectations, suggesting the
country's economy may not have suffered as mightily from the
June vote to exit the European Union as previously thought.
    On Thursday, a reading of the British manufacturing industry
also beat expectations.
    Traders raised their bets on the yen with the Japanese
currency rising to its highest level of net-long contracts since
May 3.
    The Reuters calculation for the aggregate U.S. dollar
position is derived from net positions of International Monetary
Market speculators in the yen, euro, sterling, Swiss franc and
Canadian and Australian dollars.
        
Japanese Yen (Contracts of 12,500,000 yen) 
 $-7.522 billion
         Aug. 30, 2016          Prior week
         week             
 Long             91,570            90,387
 Short            27,909            30,071
 Net              63,661            60,316
 
EURO (Contracts of 125,000 euros)
 $10.831 billion
         Aug. 30, 2016          Prior week
         week             
 Long            108,261           105,374
 Short           190,186           182,032
 Net             -81,925           -76,658
 
POUND STERLING (Contracts of 62,500 pounds sterling)
 $7.83 billion
         Aug. 30, 2016         Prior week
         week             
 Long             39,648           35,850
 Short           132,133          130,828
 Net             -92,485          -94,978
 
SWISS FRANC (Contracts of 125,000 Swiss francs)
 $-0.245 billion
         Aug. 30, 2016         Prior week
         week             
 Long             24,557           20,921
 Short            16,349           19,036
 Net               8,208            1,885
 
CANADIAN DOLLAR (Contracts of 100,000 Canadian dollars)
 $-1.296 billion
         Aug. 30, 2016         Prior week
         week             
 Long             46,808           50,097
 Short            24,408           33,363
 Net              22,400           16,734
 
AUSTRALIAN DOLLAR (Contracts of 100,000 Aussie dollars)
 $-3.256 billion 
         Aug. 30, 2016         Prior week
         week             
 Long             70,432           71,011
 Short            27,866           28,254
 Net              42,566           42,757
 
MEXICAN PESO (Contracts of 500,000 pesos)
 $0.769 billion
         Aug. 30, 2016         Prior week
         week             
 Long             19,848           26,845
 Short            53,082           55,386
 Net             -33,234          -28,541
 
NEW ZEALAND DOLLAR (Contracts of 100,000 New Zealand dollars)
 $0.064 billion 
         Aug. 30, 2016         Prior week
         week             
 Long             31,747           29,926
 Short            29,854           30,804
 Net               1,893             -878
 
 (Reporting by Dion Rabouin; Editing by G Crosse and Leslie
Adler)
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