February 27, 2018 / 11:47 AM / 4 months ago

SOFTS-London cocoa climbs to three-month high, sugar slips

LONDON, Feb 27 (Reuters) - London cocoa futures rose to a three-month high on Tuesday, boosted partly by a diminishing crop outlook in top grower Ivory Coast, while sugar and coffee prices were slightly lower.

COCOA

* May London cocoa was up 1 pound, or 0.1 percent, at 1,565 pounds a tonne at 1137 GMT after climbing to a three-month high of 1,574 pounds.

* Dealers said the market was also buoyed by technically-driven buying after its recent strong performance.

* “On a cumulative basis since the start of the season, shipments (from Ivory Coast) are apparently still on a par with last year, yet the outlook is worsening,” Commerzbank said.

* “The market is eagerly awaiting the estimates that are due to be published this week by the International Cocoa Organization,” Commerzbank added.

* The ICCO is expected to publish its first forecast for the global balance in 2017/18 on Wednesday.

* May New York cocoa fell $2, or 0.1 percent, to $2,213 a tonne after climbing to a peak of $2,224, the highest since Nov. 10, 2017.

SUGAR

* May raw sugar was down 0.05 cents, or 0.4 percent, at 13.61 cents per lb.

* Dealers noted front month March was maintaining a premium to May in the run-up to its expiry on Wednesday.

* “The pricing continues to look like the market has rolled the surplus to later in the year. The New York March contract will expire on Wednesday to finalise the issue,” Commonwealth Bank of Australia analyst Tobin Gorey said.

* A substantial global surplus is still widely anticipated in the 2017/18 season, driven partly by rising production in top consumer India.

* India’s sugar production is likely to rise to a record 29.2 million tonnes in the 2017/18 season, up nearly 12 percent from a previous estimate as Maharashtra state’s output could more than double, according to a survey of global and local dealers.

* May white sugar fell $0.30, or 0.1 percent, to $359.10 a tonne.

COFFEE

* May arabica coffee was down a marginal 0.10 cent, or 0.1 percent, at $1.2180 per lb.

* May robusta coffee fell $6, or 0.3 percent, to $1,738 a tonne. (Reporting by Nigel Hunt Editing by Alexander Smith)

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