FMX Exclusive: Silver Contango Crushed – Short Squeeze Imminent Or Position Limit Ruling Fall Out?

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Courtesy of our friends at FMX Connect.

Silver Contango Crushed – Short Squeeze Imminent or Position Limit Ruling Fall Out?

In silver, the contango was hit hard about 3 AM this morning  with 2 year futures coming in as much as 15 cents relative to spot. The Z11/Z12 futures spread settled 21.40 yesterday and the market today is 13/15. The H/Z futures spread settled 19.2 The market today is 9/11.

What could cause this?

Factually speaking, 2 reasons cause contango to collapse. The first is interest rates and interest rates would have to decrease a large amount for this type of move in the spreads. The second is delivery concerns. When a producer, bullion dealer, or speculator is short the front month, come expiration, it has a a choice: make delivery or don’t make delivery. There are 2 ways to avoid making delivery, Reissuing, which is essential covering shorts, and deferment. Deferment involves leasing the metal from someone else or rolling your short to a back month.

Last time we saw a contango move this significant was in 1997 before Warren Buffet took delivery. While more information is needed, and this could be a fake out we think the spread’s move is important. It happened during Asian hours and the Asian market has shown strong physical demand. If this continues in conjunction with higher lease rates you will more than likely see a short squeeze. There is another less exciting reason it could be happening. Additionally, it could be related to the CFTC position limit ruling. Silver position limits will be implemented in 2 tiers. The first tier is a limit on front month contracts. The 2nd tier limits the aggregate number of contacts for all back months combined. Someone could just be moving their position around to deal with the new regulatory structure. Our conclusion is that we are going to have a short squeeze or increased volatility in the spread market as major players shuffle their open interest around. Stay tuned..