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Kostas Kalevras

The commodities market is quite different because it deals with contracts. You buy an oil contract that states that you will need *physical* delivery of stated quantity on stated date. In other words, you cannot trade larger quantities than those available on the market and your ultimate loss or gain depends solely on the oil spot price on contract expiration. If the spot price is larger you 'll gain the difference, or you 'll suffer a loss.
Consequently, speculation might accelerate oil price movements but i do not believe that it can drive oil prices to a direction opposite from the one the market is going anyway. Especially since speculators in principle only have access to funds and not actual storage capacity (tankers, land storage etc). Even if they had there would be no point in storing oil unless they expected it to be more expensive in the future.

Just my personal interpretation of the market.

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