November 29, 2019 / 12:21 PM / 15 days ago

SOFTS-Raw sugar gains as funds cover shorts positions

LONDON, Nov 29 (Reuters) - Raw sugar prices rose on Friday as funds scaled back short positions, though producer selling capped gains, keeping the market within its recent range.

SUGAR

* March raw sugar rose 0.09 cent, or 0.7%, at 12.88 cents per lb at 1157 GMT, heading for a sixth consecutive week of modest gains.

* Funds have been slowly covering their short positions amid forecasts for a wide market deficit this season, but producer selling of excess stocks and a weak real have capped gains.

* “There’s all this producer pricing, it gets more and more heavy when we get towards 13 cents and that’s why we haven’t pushed up there,” said a dealer. He added, however: “Most people are of the opinion we are more likely to break on the upside.”

* French sugar group Tereos SA expects to report improved results in the second half of 2019/20, driven by higher prices for both sugar and ethanol, Chief Executive Alexis Duval said.

* March white sugar was up $0.20, or 0.1%, at $343.40 a tonne.

* Ukraine has produced around 1.26 million tonnes of white sugar this year from 8.4 million tonnes of sugar beet, exceeding expectations.

COFFEE

* March arabica coffee futures fell 0.6 cents, or 0.5%, at $1.1785 per lb, edging away from a one-year high set early this week.

* Arabica has been supported in recent weeks by dryer-than-normal weather conditions and by declines in ICE-certified stocks, which are near their lowest in around a year and a half.

* A global deficit is widely forecast in the 2019/20 season.

* Looking ahead to next season, Rabobank said it expects the country will produce a record 66.7 million 60-kg bags. However, the bank believes the price outlook will remain positive as production will likely fall in other countries.

* March robusta rose $8, or 0.6%, to $1,406 a tonne, having hit its highest since early July on Tuesday.

* Coffee exports from Vietnam, the world’s top robusta producer, likely fell 14.6% in the first 11 months of this year.

COCOA

* March New York cocoa fell $7, or 0.3%, to $2,589 per tonne, as the market’s retreat from a recent 1-1/2 year high gathered momentum.

* March cocoa may stabilise around a support at $2,566 per tonne and retest a resistance at $2,683, technical signals indicate.

* March London cocoa was down 3 pounds, or 0.2%, at 1,897 a tonne.

Reporting by Maytaal Angel, editing by Louise Heavens

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