UPDATE 1-Brazil's Cosan says fixed sugar prices for most of its stocks
(Adds detail on 2015/16 forward sales)
SAO PAULO Nov 6 (Reuters) - Brazilian sugar and ethanol producer Cosan has fixed the price of nearly all the sugar in stock now, CEO Marcos Lutz said in a conference call on Thursday, adding that forward prices for the sweetener more than compensate for carriage costs.
Lutz said that the company has already fixed the price of 18 percent of the sugar Cosan expects to produce in the coming 2015/16 season that officially starts in April. He said the size of the next crop would be similar to the current crop that is about to finish crushing in the coming weeks.
Analysts have estimated the drought-stricken center-south cane crop at 550-560 million tonnes, down from the 597 million the season before due to below average rainfall since January.
The company expects the 2015 sugar market to be tighter and prices to firm, Lutz said. Other sugar and ethanol groups in Brazil have also adopted the strategy of building stocks in anticipation of improved prices next year in both commodities.
New York ICE futures ended Wednesday at 15.51 cents/lb, close to its lowest in over a month.
In the company's third quarter earnings report published late on Wednesday, Cosan said its sugar and ethanol stocks were up 45 percent and 66 percent respectively from a year ago. (Reporting by Gustavo Bonato and Reese Ewing, Editing by Franklin Paul and Chizu Nomiyama)
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