October 16, 2017 / 11:57 AM / in a month

SOFTS-Cocoa slips as short-covering wanes, raw sugar also lower

LONDON, Oct 16 (Reuters) - Cocoa futures on ICE fell on Monday as a bout of short-covering by speculators ran out of steam, while raw sugar also slipped in thin volume.

COCOA

* December London cocoa was down 13 pounds, or 0.8 percent, at 1,553 pounds a tonne by 1139 GMT.

* December New York cocoa was down $15, or 0.7 percent, at $2,072 a tonne.

* The New York market hit a six-month high last week as speculators covered short positions, partly inspired by stronger-than-expected European cocoa grind data.

* However, dealers said on Monday the buying had petered out, leaving the market with little support.

* “Once the short-covering ends, the market does tend to fall back in on itself,” said one dealer. “And I think the industry feels comfortable, I don’t see them exactly stepping up to the plate in a hurry to extend their cover.”

* Dealers were awaiting third-quarter cocoa grind data from North America and Asia this week for further signs of demand.

* The market was also monitoring weather in top grower Ivory Coast, although dealers said recent rains were not heavy enough to cause significant disruptions to the main crop.

SUGAR

* March raw sugar fell 0.14 cent, or 1 percent, to 14.26 cents per lb.

* Prices were under selling pressure last week although they recovered some ground on Friday, partly supported by a stronger Brazilian real.

* A stronger real dents local currency returns on dollar-denominated commodities, discouraging producers from selling.

* However, dealers said ample global supplies were limiting the upside potential and prices remained stuck in a technical range.

* “The best that can be said about the sugar market is that it seems to be forming a base at around 14 cents, even if it has consistently failed to break out on the upside,” said Nick Penney, senior sugar trader at Sucden Financial.

* Speculators trimmed their net short position in raw sugar by 2,080 lots to 99,601 lots in the week to Oct. 10, exchange data showed on Friday.

* December white sugar was down $3.10, or 0.8 percent, at $371.70 a tonne.

COFFEE

* December arabica coffee fell 1 cent, or 0.8 percent, to $1.2545 per lb.

* November robusta coffee eased $14, or 0.7 percent, to $1,995 per tonne.

* Dealers were monitoring weather in top grower Vietnam, which was bracing for typhoon Khanun after destructive floods battered the country’s north and centre last week, killing 72 people. (Reporting by Ana Ionova, editing by David Evans)

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