March crude oil prices began on a positive track, but news of increased shipments through the Trans Alaska Pipeline seemed to pressure. Additionally, recent comments from the IEA suggested that current crude oil pricing was alarming and could become a factor that limits economic growth prospects. Meanwhile, the latest reports from the Alyeska Pipeline Co. indicated that the Alaskan pipeline bypass was completed over the weekend, and they expected the pipeline flow to reach 75% of capacity today. Some traders suggested that this morning's weakness in crude oil could be attributed to the latest OPEC monthly report that reiterated ample supplies of crude oil available and that the higher pricing was likely the result of excess speculation. While OPEC did boost their 2011 global oil demand outlook by 50,000 barrels per day, the increased speculation within the oil market remains a concern. The Commitments of Traders Futures and Options report as of January 11th showed non-commercial traders were net long 226,527 contracts, an increase of 25,252. Non-commercial and nonreportable traders combined held a net long position of 260,975 contracts, an increase of 18,976 in their net long positioning.
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