July 4, 2019 / 1:18 PM / 19 days ago

SOFTS-London cocoa prices rise amid uncertainty over floor price

LONDON, July 4 (Reuters) - London cocoa prices on ICE rallied on Thursday amid uncertainty over how top producers Ivory Coast and Ghana will price their cocoa going forward.

COCOA

* September London cocoa was up 39 pounds, or 2.2%, at 1,848 pounds per tonne at 1256 GMT. ICE Futures U.S. markets were closed on Thursday for the July 4 national holiday. September New York cocoa settled down 1.6% on Wednesday.

* Ivory Coast and Ghana failed on Wednesday to come to an agreement with the chocolate industry over how to introduce a new floor price for their exports.

* Cocoa prices have slipped overall since hitting a one year peak last month after the West African neighbours, which account for more than 60% of global output, said they would fix a minimum price of $2,600 per tonne for their cocoa.

* “The (price) retreat since mid-June has to do with the speculative flows. (Speculators) built quite a big long position and seemingly haven’t wanted to add to that until they see the outcome of the Abidjan conference,” said a dealer.

COFFEE

* September robusta coffee rose $18, or 1.2%, in London to $1,473 per tonne, after touching a more than three-week peak of $1,489 on Monday.

* September arabica coffee hit a seven month high of $1.15 in New York on Wednesday.

* Prices have been buoyed by concerns over frost risk in top producer Brazil.

* South and central Brazil are expected to be hit by the coldest temperatures of the year in coming days, and frost will likely form in some coffee areas, but it is unlikely to be widespread and will not be intense.

* Vietnam’s local coffee prices stayed flat from last week on Thursday in low volume trade, as farmers had almost sold out their stocks for the season.

SUGAR

* August white sugar rose $0.30, or 0.1%, in London, to $321 per tonne.

* October raw sugar settled up 1.5% in New York on Wednesday following three consecutive days of losses. Prices fell on Tuesday to a more than one-month low.

* India’s monsoon rains in the week ending Wednesday were below average for the fifth time in a row, although the deficit was the lowest since the start of the season after the monsoon revived in central and western regions.

* Still, sugar prices remain under pressure from hefty global stockpiles.

* Sugar imports into Ethiopia, Africa’s second-most populous country, are expected to climb 29% in 2019/20 from the previous year as production falls.

* Russia’s sugar beet test showed an average root weight at 117 grammes compared with 81 grammes last July. (Reporting by Maytaal Angel; Editing by Mark Potter)

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