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Commodity Markets

OPEC Monthly Oil Market Report – August 2017

9

Graph 2 - 1: Major commodity price indices

Graph 2 - 2: Inventories at the LME

In July, the

Henry Hub natural gas index

declined. The average price was up by 2ȼ, or 0.8%, to $2.96 per

million British thermal units (mmbtu) after trading at an average of $2.94/mmbtu the previous month.

The

Energy Information Agency

(EIA) said utilities added 20 billion cubic feet (bcf) of

working gas in

underground storage

during the week ending 28 July. This was slightly below the median analysts’

expectations of a 21 bcf injection. Total working gas in underground storage stood at 3,010 bcf, which was

8.5% lower than at the same time the previous year but 3.0% higher than the previous five-year average.

Investment flows into commodities

Open interest (OI)

increased in July for selected US commodity markets such as copper and precious

metals, while it declined for agriculture, livestock, crude oil and natural gas. Meanwhile, in monthly terms,

speculative net length positions increased for agriculture, crude oil, natural gas, copper and livestock but

declined for precious metals.

Table 2 - 2: CFTC data on non-commercial positions, ‘000 contracts

Agriculture’s OI

decreased by 4.4% to 4,955,448 contracts in July. Meanwhile, money managers switched

their stance to a combined net long position of 32,156 lots. Net long positions increased in the soy complex,

corn and wheat.

Henry Hub’s natural gas OI

decreased by 6.0% m-o-m to 1339,013 contracts in July. Money managers

increased their net length by 9.8% to 85,692 lots.

20

40

60

80

100

120

20

40

60

80

100

120

Jul 15

Sep 15

Nov 15

Jan 16

Mar 16

May 16

Jul 16

Sep 16

Nov 16

Jan 17

Mar 17

May 17

Jul 17

Index

Index

Energy

Non-energy

Agriculture

Food

Base metals

HH natural gas

Gold

Source: World Bank, Commodity price data.

Base year 2010 = 100

0

500

1,000

1,500

2,000

2,500

0

100

200

300

400

500

Jul 16

Aug 16

Sep 16

Oct 16

Nov 16

Dec 16

Jan 17

Feb 17

Mar 17

Apr 17

May 17

Jun 17

Jul 17

'000 Tonnes

'000 Tonnes

Copper

Lead

Nickel

Tin

Zinc

Pr. Aluminium (RHS)

Sources: London Metal Exchange and Thomson Reuters.

Jun 17

Jul 17

Jun 17

%OI

Jul 17

%OI

Crude oil

2,167

2,149

147

7

183

9

Natural gas

1,425

1,339

78

5

86

6

Agriculture

5,182

4,955

-357

-7

32

1

Precious metals

670

677

154

23

39

6

Copper

260

277

56

21

74

27

Livestock

716

712

206

29

207

29

Total

10,419

10,109

284

79

620

77

Note: Data on this table is based on monthly average.

Source: US Commodity Futures Trading Commission.

Open interest

Net length