April crude oil prices had a mixed trade early this morning as it faced growing tensions in Libya and reports of greater Saudi Arabian production. While estimates suggest that nearly 75% of Libyan crude oil output has been shut-in, Saudi officials indicate that they have increased their output to more than offset supply disruptions. By some accounts daily crude oil output in Saudi Arabia has increased over 8.4% from last month's production levels. The Commitments of Traders Futures and Options report as of February 22nd showed non-commercial traders were net long 280,081 contracts, an increase of 50,485. Non-commercial and nonreportable traders combined held a net long position of 320,272 contracts, an increase of 32,958 during the report week. The combined spec and fund Net Long position has hit a new record level.
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