By admin       2018-01-04

Cotton futures settled higher Wednesday, led by spot March as it regained nearly half of the previous session’s triple-digit loss.March settled up 61 points to 78.11 cents, completing an inside day and finishing near the high of its 92-point range from 77.37 to 78.29 cents. May closed up 49 points at 78.26 cents, trading within an 89-point range from 77.61 to 78.50, and July closed up 54 points to 78.68 cents.The other contracts closed up 15 to 45 points, with December gaining 26 points to settle at 74.39 cents.Volume slowed to an estimated 23,676 lots from 34,288 lots the prior session when spreads accounted for 13,431 lots or 39% and EFP 204 lots. Options volume declined to 4,856 lots (2,136 calls and 2,720 puts) from 8,114 lots (5,987 calls and 2,127 puts).With estimates converted to 480-pound bales from metric tons, the International Cotton Advisory Committee now expects world production to exceed consumption by 970,000, down 1.42 million from last month.The ICAC reduced its world crop estimate 1.42 million bales to 116.8 million and left its mill use forecast unchanged at 115.83 million bales. Production is projected up 11% from last season owing to increased area and consumption is forecast up 3% on a lower international cotton price and the rising price of competing fibers. International cotton prices have continued to move upward the last few months, ICAC said, climbing from a season low of 77 cents per pound at the start of the season to a season high at the end of the calendar year of 88 cents. The current season average of 80 cents is down from the 2016-17 average of 83 cents.Cotton consumption stagnated last season at 112.62 million bales, according to ICAC, but topped production of 105.59 million bales.The ICAC projected world 2017-18 ending stocks at 87.17 million bales, compared with USDA’s December forecast of 88 million. The USDA cut its estimate of India’s 2016-17 ending stocks a million bales, resulting in a similar decline in global 2017-18 beginning stocks and paring the expansion previously expected in world stocks to a marginal increase. The USDA projected world consumption at 119.59 million bales, largest in a decade with an annual growth rate of 4.2% expected to more than double the long-run level. That still was slightly below production, estimated up nearly 13% from last season to 119.96 million bales. In other international cotton news, the Cotton Association of India is reported to have left retained its estimate of production in the world’s largest cotton producer at 37.5 million bales of 170 kilos or 29.3 million 480-pound bales. Earlier reports of pink bollworm damage in key producing areas prompted lots of speculation about the size of the crop. The USDA last month trimmed its estimate of India’s crop 300,000 bales to 29.5 million, up from 27 million bales last season. Futures open interest gained 312 lots to 283,001 on Tuesday, with March’s down 1,644 lots to 22,644 and May’s up 857 lots to 54,935. Decertification of four bales shaved cert stocks to 47,597 bales.

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