The July Nymex contract gained 2.8 cents to settle Monday at$2.364, thanks in large measure to momentum the contract gainedafter it filled in the technical chart gap with its early move downto $2.295. However, the upside was capped by resistance at $2.43,and July settled right in the middle of its technical tradingrange. “July trading is pretty much in cruise control now,” asource said. “A lot of people have already gotten out of theirpositions, so I think you’ll see the rangebound trading continue[today]. However, that range is 15 cents, so trading will mostlikely be volatile, which will be the first time in months acontract has expired with a good dose of volatility,” he told GPI.
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A casual observer to Friday’s futures market would note themodest 0.7 cent gain registered by the prompt month and conclude itwas a quiet day of position squaring ahead of the weekend. However,trading in the pit was anything but serene as the prompt contractopened below $2.00, tested support from the continuation chart at$1.97, then moved higher looking to fill in a chart gap in the$2.05-09 range. And all that happened before the lunch hour in NewYork. Afternoon trading brought some selling pressure into themarket and July drifted back downward, before settling nearlyunchanged at $2.027 for the day. Estimated volume weighed in at ahefty 57,301 with trading within a 10-cent trading range.
Anyone who thought that the meager 0.1 cent gain the June Nymexcontract turned in on Tuesday would lead to a boring expiration daywas dead wrong. June managed to spew out one more major pricedecline on Wednesday, as the contract went off the board down 7.8cents for the day to settle at $2.017.
Following three days when trading volume at the New YorkMercantile Exchange averaged 117,518 contracts, the May contractgained a mere 1.4 cents to $2.342 amid a session when “only” 74,378contracts changed hands. Sources said much of the activity onFriday was simply position covering ahead of both the weekend andthe expiration of the May contract this Tuesday.