(OILPRICE) — Just as I was about to write about the long side of markets, I read about the latest twists and turns in a fascinating story on the short side of things: a potential global helium shortage. And yes, I fought long and hard against the urge to use a pun in the title…‘helium market deflates’… ‘helium worries balloon’…’helium market blowing up’ ….etc, etc, etc.

The long side subject I was initially off on a tangent about was the speculative positions in crude. According to CFTC data, WTI saw non-commercial (speculative) positions reach a record high level in recent weeks – coinciding with the recent high of $108.

But as Fed taper fears have tapered optimism, these positions have been unwound somewhat, and WTI prices have eased lower from near the highs of the year. As for Brent crude, further support from geopolitical tension on seventeen different fronts has meant that speculative longs for Brent have reached a record high in the latest data out earlier this week.

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