By admin       2018-02-09

ICE cotton futures gained nearly 1 percent on Thursday, snapping a four-day losing streak, as strong export sales data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) offset a slightly bearish supply-demand report. *Cotton contract for March expiry settled up 0.66 cent, or 0.87 percent, at 76.62 cents per lb. It traded within a range of 75.89 and 77.52 cents a lb. *"The exports were very strong, much stronger than most expected, and this is why USDA's downgrading of its U.S. exports projection is something of a shock," said Louis Rose, director of research and analytics at Tennessee-based Rose Commodity. *In its monthly World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) report on Thursday, the USDA lowered its projections for U.S. exports by 300,000 bales to 14.5 million bales and raised ending stocks estimates to 6 million bales from 5.70 earlier. "Overall, the report (WASDE) is neutral to bearish," Rose said. *USDA's weekly export sales data on Thursday showed exports totaled 432,500 running bales for the week ended Feb. 1, a marketing-year high, up 42 percent from the previous week and 56 percent from the prior four-week average. Net upland sales of 402,400 running bales for 2017-18 for the same period were up 33 percent from the week before and 75 percent from the prior four-week average. *Total futures market volume rose by 19,737 to 88,030 lots. Data showed total open interest fell 2,662 to 290,902 contracts in the previous session. *Certificated cotton stocks deliverable as of Feb. 7 totaled 76,527 480-lb bales, up from 75,757 in the previous session. *Meanwhile, the current La Niña weather cycle is likely to transition into more neutral conditions by spring, the National Weather Service's Climate Prediction Center (CPC) said on Thursday. During a La Niña year, winter temperatures are warmer than normal in the Southeast United States and cooler than normal in the Northwest, according to the U.S. National Ocean Service

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