The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (Commission or CFTC) publishes these Commitments of Traders (COT) reports on the dynamics of the soybeans market. The COT reports break down the open interest in soybeans futures and options in futures markets where 20 or more traders hold positions equal to or above the reporting levels established by the CFTC.
The COT reports on soybeans are based on the position data of the reporting companies. The position data provided by reporting companies is based on the classification made by soybeans traders with respect to their predominant business purpose. They report on the CFTC Form 40, in which they classify themselves into one of the four categories: Producer/Merchant/Processor/User, Swap Dealers, Managed Money or Other Reportables. The CFTC staff only carry out a plausibility check because they do not know the specific reasons for the traders' soybeans positions, and thus this information does not play a role in determining the traders' classification. However, remember that traders may report different business purposes for different commodities and therefore a soybeans trader may have different classifications for the other commodities. However, for one of the reports, the Traders in Financial Futures, traders are classified in the same category for all commodities. Due to legal restrictions (CEA Section 8 data and confidential business practices), the CFTC does not publish information on how individual soybeans traders are classified in the COT reports.
In general, the CFTC receives the required Tuesday morning soybeans trading data from the various reporting units. These are then reviewed and published on the last working day of the same week, usually Friday, at 15:30. The CFTC then receives the required data from the various reporting units on Wednesday morning.
These reports can be used to see the mood in the soybeans market and to predict if the market is more on the buyer side or the seller side. Volume can also be considered to estimate the strength of a trend or trend change, for example.
The chart of the entire available history of the "CFTC Soybeans Non-Commercial Net Positions" macroeconomic indicator.
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