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TheStreet Open House

Time Not Ripe for Euro Shares Trade

The following commentary comes from an independent investor or market observer as part of TheStreet's guest contributor program, which is separate from the company's news coverage.

By Scott Pluschau

NEW YORK (ETF Digest) -- Last week I wrote an article on the Legacy Commitments of Traders Report (COT) in the Dollar Index.

This index is based on the performance of the dollar relative to a basket of foreign currencies. However this is a weighted basket, with the euro having on overwhelmingly large weighting of nearly 60%.

The other currencies in the basket are the yen, pound, Canadian dollar, krona and Swiss franc. So what happens to the euro is going to have a major impact on the performance of the dollar index. It is for this reason that some have requested I provide commentary on the euro futures.

This past Friday saw the release of the most recent COT reports. The COT reports are put out weekly by the United States Commodity Futures Trading Commission. Without a holiday to interfere, the CFTC releases the reports for all futures contracts at 3:30 p.m. ET on Friday of each week, for which the cutoff for the report is the Tuesday of that week. The report this past Friday was for the cutoff on Tuesday, Jan. 17.

The legacy COT report is broken down into two categories, the "Reportable" and the "Non-Reportable."

What determines whether you are a reportable or a non-reportable depends on the specific futures contract and the size of the position you are holding. If you are above that size, your positions must be reported to the CFTC. Every position that is left over from the reportable category in the current open interest is put into the non-reportable category. Each digit of open interest is a single contract between a buyer (long) and a seller (short). If you are a non-reportable, you are likely a "small speculator."

The reportable category is broken down between Commercial Traders and Non-Commercial traders. Commercial traders use futures to "transfer risk." They are known as "hedgers."

An example of a commercial might be someone who is selling an enormous amount of goods or services overseas between America and Europe to be delivered and paid for at a future date in time in either euro or dollars.

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