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Jim Hyerczyk

Jim Hyerczyk

Fundamental and technical analyst with 30 years experience.

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Oil Market Forecast & Review 22nd February 2013

In a move that has been anticipated for several weeks, Nearby crude oil futures plunged sharply lower the week-ending February 22 after support for higher-risks assets fell across the board following comments in the Fed’s latest minutes. The sharp break did not catch chart-watchers by surprise since the recent patterns on the daily and weekly charts had indicated the formation of resistance and the possibility of a change in trend to down over the near-term.

With a distributive pattern taking place near a downtrending angle, traders were waiting for a catalyst to trigger long liquidation. It seems that sellers and short-traders were willing to play the waiting game until some news event forced their collective hands. According to the latest U.S. government Commitment of Traders report dated February 20, for the second straight reporting period long speculators increased positions while commercial traders added to their short positions. This essentially turned into the classic battle between smart money and trend-followers.

The smart money or commercial traders looked at the economic situation and determined that they were comfortable with shorting at the lofty price levels as the market approached $100.00. Trend traders, on the other hand, were driven by headlines of an improving economy and the unending Fed stimulus. Although the recent action suggests that trend traders most likely bailed out at the right time when the trend changed to down, those who…

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