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Big players return to short positions in bitcoin futures on CBOE again

Over the week ending March 13, the number of open contracts for bitcoin futures on the CBOE bounced back from 5,563 to 6,429, amid a moderate decrease in the price of the underlying asset. This is according to thereportfiled by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC).

The net short position held by the bigger players over the week recovered to 1,716 from 1,599 contracts, prompted by an increase in both long and short positions, to 3,735 from 2,782 contracts and to 5451 from 4,381 contracts, respectively. At the same time, the net short position held by the institutional investors dropped more than twofold, from 110 to 41 contracts.

As for the smaller players, their net long position over the period decreased too, from 1,599 to 1716 contracts, whereas long positions were down from 2,563 to 2531 contracts, and short positions slipped from 964 to 815 contracts.

By the bigger players we here mean the participants obliged to submit regular reports to the commission, including brokers, externally financed investment funds, and others.

The figures above do not take into account the positions that are part of spread trading strategies, where traders open both short and long positions simultaneously.

The CBOE began trading bitcoin futures on December 12, followed by the CME Group on December 18. However, the CME Group data are still not reflected in the weekly CFTC report.

When assessing the difference in short and long positions of large and small players, it should be borne in mind that a short position in the bitcoin futures market does not necessarily mean that the trader’s forecast for the price of the underlying asset is negative.

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