May 11, 2020 / 11:54 AM / 3 months ago

SOFTS-Raw sugar edges up, coffee and cocoa also gain

LONDON, May 11 (Reuters) - Raw sugar futures on ICE rose on Monday as the market edged further away from a 12-1/2 year low set in late April as funds scaled back short positions while coffee and cocoa prices also gained.

SUGAR

* July raw sugar rose 0.08 cents, or 0.8%, to 10.37 cents per lb by 1134 GMT.

* Dealers said the market was slowly beginning to recover ground, though concerns remain over the potential for Brazilian production to rise significantly as mills opt to maximise output of the sweetener because of a lack of demand for cane-derived ethanol.

* “Sugar is not doomed - spot sugar is actually tight - and the funds are short (and buying back) and the technicals and macros are relatively positive. So we may get a bounce in a bearish market,” said Marex Spectron analyst Robin Shaw.

* Speculators sharply reduced their net short position in raw sugar on ICE Futures U.S. in the week to May 5, trimming 21,139 contracts for a total short of 54,759 contracts, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission said on Friday.

* August white sugar was down $0.80, or 0.2%, at $347.30 a tonne.

COFFEE

* July arabica coffee rose 0.35 cents, or 0.3%, to $1.1200 per lb, with the market supported by concern that this year’s South American harvest could be disrupted by ongoing efforts to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus.

* South American coffee growers could delay the harvest this year and limit the number of workers they employ as the novel coronavirus pandemic continues to spread, threatening to reduce this year’s crop of export-quality beans.

* “Reports such as this (indicating a possible drop in volumes of high-quality beans) have been lending support to the arabica price in recent days,” Commerzbank said in a note.

* July robusta coffee rose $4, or 0.3%, to $1,190 a tonne.

COCOA

* July New York cocoa was up $47, or 2.0%, at $2,447 a tonne.

* Dealers noted that port arrivals in top grower Ivory Coast continued to trail the pace of last season.

* July London cocoa rose 33 pounds, or 1.7%, to 1,969 pounds a tonne​.

* Ivory Coast cocoa grinders processed 328,000 tonnes of beans by the end of April, up from 317,000 tonnes in the same period last season, data from exporters’ association GEPEX showed on Monday. (Reporting by Nigel Hunt Editing by David Goodman )

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