LONDON, Dec 2 (Reuters) - ICE raw sugar futures were slightly lower on Monday, retreating from the prior session’s nine-month high, while arabica coffee fell back from last week’s more than one-year peak.
* March raw sugar was down 0.04 cents, or 0.3%, at 12.90 cents per lb at 1249 GMT. The front month rose to a peak of 13.01 cents on Friday, its highest since Feb. 26.
* Dealers said funds had been scaling back a large net short position, while producer selling had helped to limit gains.
* A bullish technical outlook following the market’s recent strong performance could, however, prompt producers and the sugar trade to hold off selling and let fund buying come to them, broker Marex Spectron said in a report.
* “We may find ourselves testing just how strong the famous ‘wall of selling’ is,” Marex said.
* Weekly position data has been delayed until Monday due to last week’s U.S. Thanksgiving holiday.
* The report is expected to show a decline in the net short position held by speculators to less than 100,000 lots, down from 133,394 lots in the prior report and a peak of 245,634 lots in mid-September.
* March white sugar rose $0.90, or 0.3%, to $345.80 a tonne.
* March arabica coffee fell 0.65 cents, or 0.55%, to $1.1840 per lb. The benchmark second month rose to a peak of $1.1980 on Friday, its highest in more than one year.
* Dealers said the market was supported by the prospect of a global deficit in the 2019/20 season, while there continued to be concerns that dry conditions could curb Brazil’s 2020/21 crop.
* March robusta coffee fell $3, or 0.2%, to $1,403 per tonne.
* The harvest in top robusta producer Vietnam was beginning to gather pace with the crop expected to be similar to the prior season’s 30 million bags.
* March New York cocoa was up $3, or 0.1%, at $2,571 a tonne.
* Port arrivals in top grower Ivory Coast continued to run slightly behind last season’s pace.
* The International Cocoa Organization on Friday estimated there was a global deficit of 21,000 tonnes in 2018/19, but has not yet issued its first forecast for the current 2019/20 season.
* March London cocoa rose 5 pounds, or 0.3%, to 1,886 pounds a tonne. (Reporting by Nigel Hunt; Editing by Mark Potter)