* Weaker dollar underpins softs
* Firmer Brazilian real currency supports sugar prices
By David Brough
LONDON, April 2 (Reuters) - Raw sugar extended the prior session’s gains on Thursday from oversold positions, bolstered by a weaker dollar and an influx of new speculator money into the commodity at the start of the new quarter.
Cocoa futures firmed, with dealers focused on the coming West African mid-crops, and arabica futures were little changed.
Raw sugar futures rose further after falling to 11.91 cents a lb, the lowest in more than six years, on Tuesday.
“Sugar was very much oversold, and now we’re seeing a weakening of the dollar index against a basket of currencies,” said Tracey Allen, commodity analyst with Rabobank.
A strengthening of the Brazilian real currency has given support to sugar by reducing incentives for Brazilian producers to export.
A weaker real enables Brazilian producers to lock in higher local-currency returns from dollar-denominated sugar sales.
Front-month raw sugar has benefited from fund inflows at the start of the second quarter, and gained 0.12 cent, or 1 percent, to 12.44 cents a lb at 1002 GMT.
May white sugar rose $2.90, or 0.8 percent, to $361.00 a tonne.
Cocoa on ICE Futures U.S. firmed slightly, underpinned by fund capital inflows.
Dealers focused on favourable weather in West Africa, boosting prospects for mid-crops.
New York May cocoa gained $15, or 0.6 percent, to $2,763 a tonne.
London May cocoa rose 7 pounds, or 0.4 percent, to 1,927 pounds a tonne.
Among the new euro-based cocoa contracts launched on Monday, the CME contract <0#1CCP:> showed light volume of 23 lots traded, while the ICE contract <0#ECC:> saw zero lots traded.
May arabica coffee eased 0.05 cent, or 0.04 percent, to $1.3480 a lb.
May robusta coffee was flat at $1,750 a tonne in light volume. (Editing by Dale Hudson)