Hedge Funds Raise Brent Crude Net-Longs by Most in a Month

Dec. 31 (Bloomberg) -- Hedge funds and other money managers raised bullish bets on Brent crude by the most in a month, according to data from ICE Futures Europe.

Speculative bets that prices will rise, in futures and options combined, outnumbered short positions by 125,397 lots in the week ended Dec. 24, the London-based exchange said today in its weekly Commitment of Traders report. The increase of 19,259 contracts was the biggest weekly gain since Nov. 20.

Bearish bets by producers, merchants, processors and users of Brent outnumbered bullish positions by to 127,305 from 116,353 lots last week. Swaps dealers were net-long 46,446 contracts, down from 49,551 a week earlier.

Brent crude advanced 1.1 percent on the ICE Futures Europe in the week to Dec. 24, settling that day at $108.80 a barrel. Brent traded for $109.53 as of 12:16 p.m. London time today.

Money managers’ net-long bets on gasoil increased to 50,223 in the week to Dec. 24 from 40,518 in the previous period, the data showed.

To contact the reporter on this story: Grant Smith in London at gsmith52@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Raj Rajendran at rrajendran4@bloomberg.net