Cotton Sheds Gains After Government Report

By Julie WernauFeaturesDow Jones Newswires

Cotton futures shed gains to end lower after a government update on world agricultural supply and demand.

Cotton for March lost 0.1% to end at 72.91 cents a pound on the ICE Futures U.S. exchange.

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Before the report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Rose Commodity Group said the market was looking for U.S. and world stockpiles of cotton this year to be projected at 5.7 million bales and 89.8 million bales, respectively, versus last month's estimate of 6.1 million bales and 90.9 million bales.

The USDA placed ending stocks in the lower end of expectation at 88 million bales globally and placed U.S. ending stocks of fiber at 5.8 million bales.

Rabobank called the report "slightly bullish."

In the frozen concentrated orange juice market, the USDA further cut projections for the Florida orange crop, placing it at 46 million boxes, which would be the lowest orange crop since 1945 in Florida, home to the most oranges used in U.S. juice. The Florida Citrus industry is seeking federal emergency funding to support growers after Hurricane Irma devastated crops this year that were already impacted by an incurable disease that is causing fruit to drop before it is ripe.

Frozen concentrated orange juice for January fell 0.7% to end at $1.4995 a pound.

The cocoa market sold off 2.4% in the March contract to end at $1,867 a ton. Societe Generale said in a note money managers have been increasing their short positions, with net bets on the short side after three weeks of net positive positions.

"The increase in short positioning is the result of high-conviction trades by a few money managers," the firm said.

Arabica coffee for March lost 1.3% to end at $1.1845 a pound.

Write to Julie Wernau at julie.wernau@wsj.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

December 12, 2017 16:12 ET (21:12 GMT)