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The Associated Press March 29, 2011, 3:42PM ET

Cocoa prices plunge on Ivory Coast fighting

Cocoa prices are plunging as Ivory Coast rebels advanced on the capital over a disputed presidential election that has ensnared the cocoa trade.

Cocoa futures fell nearly 6 percent Tuesday to settle at $3,057 per metric ton.

Traders sold cocoa on expectations that a ban on exports could be lifted if the fighting ends soon.

The violent dispute revolves around which leader will control the government of the Ivory Coast, the world's largest cocoa producer. The export ban was imposed in mid-January.

In other trading, wheat, corn and soybeans rose ahead of a government forecast due Thursday that could shed more light on what crops farmers will plant this year.

Metals mostly fell. Energy prices were mixed.


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