The latest sell-off in oil prices have left speculators in a predicament: The fundamentals continue to look poor with unimpressive drawdowns in crude oil stocks, but there is a general consensus that the extension of the OPEC deal should push the market towards a rebalancing over the next few quarters.
What that means for short-term movements in prices is unclear. The unpredictability of today’s oil market is leaving some investors burned by unexpected price gyrations. For example, just ahead of the recent selloff in prices last week, oil traders bought up bets on rising prices. Hedge funds and other money managers increased their bullish bets by 7.3 percent for the week ending on June 6, but prices plunged by 5 percent a day later.