Speculators Cut Bullish Oil Bets for a Fourth Week

Hedge funds and other money managers decreased net-long positions in West Texas Intermediate crude by 9.1 percent since Jan. 13, U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission data show.

Futures climbed for a third week as companies including Apache Corp. and Total SA announced spending cuts. Bad weather kept tankers from loading in southern Iraq and Libya’s production decreased. Baker Hughes Inc. said rigs targeting oil in the U.S. dropped to the lowest in almost five years.

“To maintain production growth you are going to have to drill more,” Phil Flynn, senior market analyst at the Price Futures Group in Chicago, said by phone Feb. 13. “There’s loading issues in Iraq and production issues in Libya. Some people were caught off guard. The fundamentals are changing here.”


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