By John Kemp, senior market analyst
Portfolio investors have piled back into petroleum futures and options at the fastest rate for more than two years as concerns about a global business cycle downturn have eased.
Hedge funds and other money managers purchased the equivalent of 89 million barrels in the six most important petroleum contracts over the seven days ending on Jan. 17.
Purchasing was the fastest since November 2020 (shortly before the first successful coronavirus vaccine trials were announced) and before that April 2020 (when the first lockdowns started to be eased). The wave of buying was led by crude (+78 million barrels), especially Brent (+55 million), with smaller buying in NYMEX and ICE WTI (+23 million).