Hedge Funds May Have Turned Dollar Bulls at the Wrong Time

(Bloomberg) — Hedge funds couldn’t have picked a worse time to turn bullish on the dollar.

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After betting against the greenback for 13 straight weeks, speculators flipped to a net long position in the week ended March 14, according to data from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission. The shift came days just before the Federal Reserve tempered its language around how much additional policy tightening might be needed, sending the dollar sliding.

“Many, including some hedge funds, have been caught out by the lack of the dollar safe-haven bid amid the US regional bank woes,” said Rodrigo Catril, a senior currency strategist at National Australia Bank Ltd. in Sydney. “Expectations of Fed easing are trumping other forces” and dampening the dollar’s outlook, he added.

Forecasting the dollar’s moves has become an increasingly tricky task as turmoil in the global banking…

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