"Net length in Brent was last higher over the week to February 4, 2020 at 352,715 contracts, while the number of bullish bets was last higher on February 25, 2020 at 390,893 lots.
The uptick in net-length is certainly related to Saudi Arabia's apparent willingness to manage the market above-and-beyond what would theoretically be required to keep prices broadly supported around the $45-$50/bbl mark which others in OPEC+ appear to be happy with, Philip Jones-Lux, energy market analyst with JBC Energy, told OPIS.
'Ignoring the current wobble in demand associated with the rampant coronavirus situation across much of Europe and the United States, markets appear to still be focusing on an optimistic future picture which sees restrictions falling away from late-Q1 (2021) onwards and setting up a much stronger Q2/Q3 (2021) demand environment.' said Jones-Lux.
However, despite the rise in bullish bets or long positions of 25,928 lots, bearish bets or short positions also saw an increase of 13,907 lots. 'The fact that shorts also increased likely reflects the fact that there is simply more interest in oil markets at the moment, with equities markets also showing an uptick in overall activity. The relative lack of movement in the (Low Sulfur
Gasoil) LSG market suggests that the current cold snap isn't expected to have a fundamental impact on gasoil demand,' Jones-Lux added."