February 2, 2018 / 12:22 PM / 9 months ago

SOFTS-Raw sugar edges higher but oversupply caps gains

LONDON, Feb 2 (Reuters) - Raw sugar futures on ICE crept higher on Friday but gains were capped by the prospect of a second consecutive global surplus in the 2018/19 season.

SUGAR

* March raw sugar was up 0.08 cent, or 0.6 percent, at 13.45 cents per lb by 1201 GMT.

* Dealers said a short covering rally had helped the market pull away from a 3-1/2 month low of 13.02 cents set on Jan. 18 but producer selling was likely to limit the scope for any rebound in prices.

* The world sugar market is poised for a larger surplus than previously expected in the 2017/18 season, likely followed by another year of oversupply, a Reuters survey of 12 traders and analysts showed.

* “Perspective for sugar remains heavy for now with large production prospects, leading to growing stocks and a subsequent increase in export availability, or a decrease in imports. This will ultimately lower the range,” Sucres and Denrees Group (Sucden) said in a quarterly report.

* March white sugar rose $0.10, or 0.03 percent, to $355.70 per tonne.

* India’s sugar output is likely to jump 33 percent from a year ago to 27 million tonnes in the 2017/18 marketing year, giving the world’s second-biggest producer enough surplus for overseas sales, Rahil Shaikh, managing director of ED&F Man India, said on Friday.

COCOA

* May London cocoa rose 4 pounds or 0.3 percent to 1,425 pounds a tonne. Prices have rebounded strongly from a low last week of 1,354 pounds.

* “Trading volumes have improved on the upside indicating appetite for higher prices but we await a break of firm resistance to help confirm the outlook,” Sucden Financial technical analyst Geordie Wilkes said in a daily update.

* Wilkes saw resistance at 1,440 and 1,470 pounds.

* Dealers also cited a diminished outlook for output in Ghana as a supportive factor.

* Ghana’s cocoa purchases fell between October and mid-January compared to last season and it may miss its full-season output target because of dry weather, senior regulatory sources said.

* March New York cocoa climbed $2, or 0.1 percent, to$2,019 a tonne.

COFFEE

* March arabica coffee fell 0.70 cents, or 0.6 percent, to $1.2070 per lb.

* Honduran coffee exports grew 32 percent in January compared with the same month last year as delayed December shipments were released following a disputed election that provoked highway blockades, national coffee institute IHCAFE said on Thursday.

* March robusta coffee was down $6 or 0.3 percent, at $1,763 a tonne. (Reporting by Nigel Hunt; Editing by Adrian Croft)

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