October 24, 2017 / 11:33 AM / in a month

SOFTS-Robusta coffee slips on Vietnam weather, raw sugar firms

LONDON, Oct 24 (Reuters) - Robusta coffee futures on ICE eased on Tuesday, weighed down by improving weather in top grower Vietnam and lacklustre demand from roasters, while raw sugar climbed off two-week lows.

COFFEE

* November robusta coffee was down $13, or 0.6 percent, at $2,005 per tonne by 1116 GMT, extending losses from the previous day.

* Prices have recently climbed amid worries that rains in Vietnam could delay shipments of the new crop, but dealers noted improving weather conditions had helped ease concerns.

* “The weather is great in Vietnam for the moment,” said one dealer. “We expect the crop to be shipped from mid-November, which is not bad at all. So we don’t see any problems with the Vietnam crop for the moment.”

* Physical demand from roasters was also thin at current levels, dealers said, with the industry still well covered.

* December arabica coffee rose 0.20 cent, or 0.2 percent, to $1.2455 per lb, hovering above last week’s 3-1/2-month low of $1.23.

* Focus remained on Brazil where crop-friendly rains have arrived, although it is unclear if they will be enough to relieve dryness in the key coffee areas.

SUGAR

* March raw sugar was up 0.06 cent, or 0.4 percent, at 13.94 cents per lb, with dealers pointing to fresh buying interest emerging.

* Prices fell a day earlier to their lowest since Oct. 9, partly pressured by a sharp tumble in the Brazilian real, which typically encourages producer selling.

* The market was awaiting cane crush data from Brazil’s Unica for the first half of October, due out 1200 GMT Tuesday.

* A S&P Global Platts survey of analysts pegged the crush in Centre-South Brazil during the period at 31.98 million tonnes, down 0.7 percent year on year.

* Sugar production was seen at 2.03 million tonnes, with 44.54 percent of cane allocated to the sweetener.

* December white sugar rose $1, or 0.3 percent, to $369.10 a tonne.

* Dealers noted the whites premium - seen as a measure of refining profitability - has improved slightly in recent days but remains subdued.

* “Current season exports from the EU are only starting and they will continue to put pressure on the sugar premium at least until March,” Rabobank said in a monthly report.

COCOA

* December New York cocoa eased $2 or 0.1 percent, to $2,122 a tonne.

* December London cocoa also fell 2 pounds, or 0.1 percent, to 1,578 pounds a tonne. (Reporting by Ana Ionova; editing by Ed Osmond/Alexander Smith)

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