August 21, 2017 / 11:23 AM / 2 years ago

SOFTS-Raw sugar, robusta coffee climb, cocoa hovers near lows

LONDON, Aug 21 (Reuters) - Raw sugar futures rose on Monday, lifted by more supportive technicals and signs that funds may be due to take a breather from short-selling, while robusta coffee also climbed on follow-through speculative buying.

SUGAR

* October raw sugar was up 0.10 cent, or 0.75 percent, at 13.51 cents per lb by 1100 GMT, having climbed to a session high of 13.63 cents.

* The market closed higher on Friday, recovering much of the ground lost earlier in the week when prices sank to a seven-week low. Dealers said this helped strengthen technicals.

* Speculators boosted their net bearish stance in raw sugar to 109,699 lots in the week to Aug. 15, exchange data showed on Friday.

* Dealers said this limited the potential downside since speculators had little room for further large-scale short-selling.

* Focus was also on cane crush data from Brazil’s UNICA, due out this week, which is expected to give further indication whether low sugar prices have persuaded mills to switch more of their output to ethanol.

* “The question is how quickly mills react to the strong ethanol price, and whether they kill the golden goose,” said commodity analyst Green Pool in a report, noting ethanol demand has “underwhelmed” this year but is showing signs it could pick up.

* October white sugar rose $2.20, or 0.59 percent, to $372.80 a tonne.

COFFEE

* November robusta coffee rose $22, or 1.05 percent, to $2,123 per tonne.

* Prices rose 2.3 percent in the previous session on an uptick in arbitrage activity, as speculators bought robusta coffee and sold arabica.

* Dealers said the positive close had strengthened the technical structure and inspired follow-through buying on Monday.

* However, prices remained vulnerable to resistance just above the 40-day moving average, said Sucden Financial technical analyst Geordie Wilkes.

* December arabica coffee rose 0.25 cents, or 0.19 percent, to $1.3195 per lb, consolidating after hitting a 5-week low on Friday.

COCOA

* December London cocoa fell 12 pounds, or 0.80 percent, to 1,484 pounds a tonne in thin volume, partly weighed down by a firmer British pound.

* December New York cocoa also slipped $8, or 0.43 percent, to $1,870 a tonne.

* Prices jumped on Friday, but dealers said the market was still plagued by a broadly bearish outlook.

* They noted that, despite expectations for a delay to the next crop from top grower Ivory Coast, momentum was dampened by worries about a looming global surplus. (Reporting by Ana Ionova, editing by Louise Heavens)

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