Hedge Funds Cut Commodities Bets

Nov 5 2012 | 1:18pm ET

Hedge funds ended October with their lowest exposure to commodities since the summer.

Futures and options on 18 commodities dropped by 11% in the week ended Oct. 30, the day after Hurricane Sandy made landfall in southern New Jersey, the Commodities Futures Trading Commission reports. Bullish oil bets hit a four-month low, as oil refineries on the U.S. East Coast closed in advance of the storm's arrival.

Bets on copper and gasoline also dropped, the former to an eight-week low and the latter for the fourth week in a row.

Other uncertainty seems to have hurt hedge funds' and other investors' taste for commodities, including renewed uncertainty in Europe and tomorrow's U.S. presidential election, which forecasts indicate will be a close contest.


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The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) ordered The Goldman Sachs Group Inc., and Goldman, Sachs & Co. to pay a $120 million penalty for attempted manipulation and false reporting of ISDAFIX Benchmark Rates, a global benchmark for interest rate products.