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The contrarian case for shorting the US dollar

The U.S. dollar has been on fire.

One of the most popular macro trades around, the Dollar Index (which tracks the U.S. dollar's move against a basket of major currencies that most predominantly includes the euro) is up 19 percent over the past eight months, and rose more than 1 percent on Thursday to approach the highest level since 2003.

But for some macro experts, the move has gotten out of hand.

"The longer-term fundamentals are definitely supportive of the dollar," Mark Dow, a macro trader who writes at the Behavioral Macro Blog, said Thursday on CNBC's "Futures Now." "The short-term positioning, however, has gotten relatively crowded."

Dow believes that currencies like the euro have gotten unfairly punished. While he believes that the economic situation in Europe won't turn around anytime soon, he says that the short-term pessimism has become overstated.

In general, "we took the deflation/global contraction story too far, and now we've started the process of the pendulum swinging back," he wrote to CNBC. "A fair number of investors and traders may find themselves wrong-footed."


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He's not alone in that call.

Kathy Lien, managing director of FX Strategy with BK Asset Management, similarly holds a long-term bullish perspective on the dollar, tempered by short-term bearishness.

"I'm skeptical of today's rally," she said, noting that it was driven by a core CPI number that was in truth not especially strong, and the hawkish words of non-voting FOMC members.

"Next week, I think we'll see the dollar trading lower than it is right now, because the move got ahead of itself," she said, while adding that she remains "quite bullish" for the longer-term trade.

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Yet some are encouraged by the recent action.

In a note released this week, Bank of America Merrill Lynch technical strategist MacNeil Curry advised clients to "stay bullish the U.S. dollar," saying that it is in the midst of "resuming its long-term bull trend after three to four weeks of consolidation."

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