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Specs increased USD exposure for 7th consecutive week - ANZ

FXStreet (Bali) - Khoon Goh, Senior FX Strategist at ANZ, reviews the latest changes in specs positioning for the week ending 2 September 2014, noting leveraged funds increased their exposure to the USD.

Key Quotes

"Leveraged funds increased their exposure to the USD for the 7th consecutive week, encouraged by a run of strong economic data. Net long USD positions increased by USD1.7bn to USD25.1bn. The increase in USD positioning was primarily against the JPY. "

"Net short positioning in JPY increased by USD1.7bn to USD12.7bn, reaching the highest level since March 2013. Apart from a stronger USD theme, the increase in net short positioning against JPY was likely further boosted by news that Yasuhisa Shiozaki was to be appointed the new Health and Welfare Minister. He is seen as someone who will speed up reforms in the USD1.2tr Government Pension Investment Fund. His comments post his appointment to reallocate assets out of Japanese government bonds is likely to weigh on the JPY."

"Focus on the upcoming Scottish referendum saw net long GBP positions further reduced. A YouGov poll on 2 September (the CFTC cutoff date) showed the unionist lead narrowing to just 53%-47%, compared with the margin of 10ppts to 20ppts typical in previous polls. With more recent polls showing the Yes campaign now in the lead, further unwinding of long GBP positions is likely in the lead up to the 18 September vote."

"Net short positioning in EUR increased by USD0.6bn to USD22.2bn, the highest level since June 2012, as leveraged funds positioned for the 4 September ECB meeting. Since the CFTC cutoff date, the ECB surprised markets by cutting its benchmark interest rates by 10bps and announced that it will begin outright purchases of asset backed securities from October. This sent EUR/USD sharply lower, and we expect short EUR positioning to be close to record highs."

"Net long positioning in the AUD increased by USD0.5bn, and looks increasingly out of line with where AUD/USD is trading. Positioning in NZD on the other hand, has declined for the seventh consecutive week, likely influenced by another decline in dairy auction prices."

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