June 15, 2018 / 8:28 PM / 10 months ago

UPDATE 1-Speculators boost bearish bets on U.S. dollar -CFTC, Reuters

 (Adds table, analyst comments, details on trade dispute)
    By Saqib Iqbal Ahmed
    NEW YORK, June 15 (Reuters) - Speculators' net short dollar
bets rose in the latest week, its second straight week of
increases, according to calculations by Reuters and Commodity
Futures Trading Commission data released on Friday.
    The value of the net short dollar positions, derived from
net positions of International Monetary Market speculators in
the yen, euro, British pound, Swiss franc and Canadian and
Australian dollars, was $7.42 billion in the week to June 12.
    That compares with a net short position of $5.54 billion the
previous week.
    To be short a currency means traders believe it will fall in
    The net short position on bitcoin CBOE futures was 1,945
contracts, up slightly from 1,926 contracts last week.
    In a wider measure of dollar positioning that
includes net contracts on the New Zealand dollar, Mexican peso,
Brazilian real and Russian ruble, the U.S. dollar posted a net
short position valued at $7.10 billion, compared with a short
position valued at $5.25 billion a week earlier.
    The dollar, which has risen since mid-April supported by
rising U.S. Treasury yields and solid economic data, resumed its
climb this week after stumbling a little last week.
    For the week, the dollar index, which measures the
greenback against a basket of six currencies, was up 1.3
percent, its largest weekly rise in seven weeks.
    Increased worries about tensions between Washington and
Beijing, with President Donald Trump announcing hefty tariffs on
$50 billion of Chinese imports on Friday, clouded the outlook
for the greenback.
    "It is hard to say what impact a trade war would have on the
dollar in the near term," said Omer Esiner, chief market analyst
at Commonwealth Foreign Exchange in Washington.
    "Longer term, if these things escalate into an all-out trade
war, which we are not quite there yet, that would certainly be a
negative for the U.S. economy," he said.
    Euro net long positions, meanwhile, shrank slightly to
88,225 contracts, the smallest position since late December,
CFTC data showed.
    The euro slipped against the dollar this week after the
European Central Bank unexpectedly said it would keep interest
rates at record lows well into next year.
    The net short position on bitcoin CBOE futures increased
slightly to 1,945 contracts, the largest net short position
since early February, the data showed.
    Japanese Yen (Contracts of 12,500,000 yen) 
 $0.391 billion
         12 Jun 2018            Prior week
 Long             60,609            52,060
 Short            55,557            55,497
 Net               5,052            -3,437
EURO (Contracts of 125,000 euros)
 $-13.07 billion
         12 Jun 2018            Prior week
 Long            236,617           239,904
 Short           148,392           150,668
 Net              88,225            89,236
POUND STERLING (Contracts of 62,500 pounds sterling)
 $-0.615 billion
         12 Jun 2018           Prior week
 Long             69,254           78,577
 Short            58,285           71,232
 Net              10,969            7,345
SWISS FRANC (Contracts of 125,000 Swiss francs)
 $4.98 billion
         12 Jun 2018           Prior week
 Long             13,020           16,349
 Short            50,265           55,565
 Net             -37,245          -39,216
CANADIAN DOLLAR (Contracts of 100,000 Canadian dollars)
 $1.237 billion
         12 Jun 2018           Prior week
 Long             30,168           35,266
 Short            45,156           51,305
 Net             -14,988          -16,039
AUSTRALIAN DOLLAR (Contracts of 100,000 Aussie dollars)
 $1.539 billion 
         12 Jun 2018           Prior week
 Long             45,318           51,719
 Short            60,553           71,927
 Net             -15,235          -20,208
MEXICAN PESO (Contracts of 500,000 pesos)
 $0.272 billion
         12 Jun 2018           Prior week
 Long             64,923           69,986
 Short            86,623           81,096
 Net             -21,700          -11,110
NEW ZEALAND DOLLAR (Contracts of 100,000 New Zealand dollars)
 $-0.308 billion 
         12 Jun 2018           Prior week
 Long             34,836           33,307
 Short            27,830           28,924
 Net               7,006            4,383
 (Reporting by Saqib Iqbal Ahmed; Editing by Diane Craft and
Will Dunham)
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