February 29, 2016 / 12:26 PM / 4 years ago

Speculators place most bullish bets on Brent crude since 2011

LONDON, Feb 29 (Reuters) - Investors in crude hold more futures and options contracts betting on rising prices than at any time since the InterContinental Exchange’s records began in 2011, exchange data showed on Monday.

Money managers raised their net long positions in Brent crude futures and options by 35,416 lots to 320,289 lots in the week to Feb. 23, beating the previous record of 292,300 lots in the week to Feb. 2.

Oil prices fell to their lowest since 2003 in January due to a global supply glut but have recovered since on hopes that a deal to freeze global output will help clear oversupply and on signs of further declines in U.S. production.

Since Feb. 11, the last time Brent was below $30, the crude benchmark has risen some 17 percent to trade above $35 a barrel, although prices are still a fraction of the $115 a barrel seen only 20 months ago. (Reporting by Dmitry Zhdannikov; editing by David Clarke)

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