The May Nymex contract lost 2.1 cents to $2.501 Wednesday amidone of the most active non-expiration days in exchange history. Anestimated 93,649 contracts changed hands, many of which were tradedafter May fell back from its new all-time high trade of $2.56. “Mayhad pretty good resistance at $2.58, but I think funds were anxiousto take profits,” an analyst told GPI.
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Expiration days are known for their unusualness, but perhaps noother day in the history of the New York Mercantile Exchange willmatch the one turned in yesterday. The last few days of trading hadbeen relatively tame, but a telephone glitch that knocked outcommunications on the floor of the Exchange (see “Phone Lines Dead; Nymex TradingDisrupted”) at approximately 1:50 EST forced many traders intotrading at prices and volumes “that they otherwise would not havedone,” a source told GPI. As a result of the madness, the Marchcontract finally left the board at $2.286, up an even 7.0 cents forthe day.
The March Nymex contract inched 3.2 cents higher to $2.270 onThursday, amid a session sources agreed was once again dominated bytechnicals. “This looks like a very strong trading range, sotoday’s result was to be expected,” a trader said. “March drifted afew cents toward the bottom of its range on Wednesday, so it makessense the contract would move higher today. Because the tradingrange is so tight right now, that is limiting how much March can goup,” he said.