Bloomberg News

Sugar Falls on Signs of Ample Supply; Cocoa Gains; Coffee Drops

March 01, 2012

Sugar fell to a one-week low on signs of ample supplies from Brazil, the world’s largest producer. Cocoa rose, while coffee dropped.

Global sugar output may top demand by as much as 7 million tons in the 12 months starting Oct. 1 as Brazil’s crop recovers and harvests in Thailand and China climb, John Stansfield, a senior analyst at Olam International Ltd.’s U.K. unit, said on Feb. 28. This season’s surplus is estimated at 9 million tons, he said. Unica, an industry association in Brazil, will release its first estimate for the nation’s next crop by the end of March.

“We’re going to see a reasonably good Brazil crop,” Sterling Smith, a market analyst at Country Hedging in St. Paul, Minnesota, said in a telephone interview. “There is no obvious supply threat in the next four to six months.”

Raw sugar for May delivery declined 0.6 percent to settle at 24.85 cents a pound at 2 p.m. on ICE Futures U.S. in New York. Earlier, the price touched 24.45 cents, the lowest for a most-active contract since Feb. 23.

Cargill Inc. said it took delivery of 1.94 billion pounds (880,152 metric tons) of sugar in transactions involving the expiration of March futures.

The Minneapolis-based company, one of the world’s biggest commodity traders, took delivery on all of the 17,325 expiring contracts of 112,000 pounds each. The supplies were at ports in Central America, Thailand, the Philippines and Brazil, ICE data show.

Cocoa futures for May delivery climbed 1.4 percent to $2,366 a ton in New York.

Arabica-coffee futures for May delivery dropped 0.4 percent to $2.041 a pound.

In London futures trading, refined sugar fell, while cocoa and robusta coffee rose on NYSE Liffe.

To contact the reporter on this story: Yi Tian in New York at ytian8@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Steve Stroth at sstroth@bloomberg.net


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