NEW YORK/LONDON: Raw sugar futures on ICE rose to the highest level in nearly six years on Friday, boosted by supply tightness, while coffee and cocoa prices also climbed.
The London market for robusta coffee, white sugar and cocoa will be closed on Monday and Tuesday, while New York will be closed on Monday.
March raw sugar settled up 0.09 cents, or 0.4%, at 20.98 cents per lb after peaking at 21.18 cents – the highest level for the front month since February 2017.
Dealers said supply tightness was expected to continue through the first quarter of next year and front-month March was trading at a premium to May of about 1.50 cents a lb, up from about 1.45 cents at the close on Thursday.
Delays to harvests in Thailand, Australia and Central America have helped to tighten supplies, while rains have also meant some cane in Brazil will not be cut until next season.
A US-based broker said, “most likely more mills (in Brazil) have decided to shut down as rains make harvesting impossible. Mills will have to wait for March. Can the market?” March white sugar rose $0.80, or 0.1%, to $572.10 a tonne.
March arabica coffee settled up 3.1 cents, or 1.8%, at $1.72 per lb after rising to a one-week peak of $1.7265. Dealers said price charts were looking more bullish after the market’s recent improved performance while there was also some short covering ahead of the long holiday weekend.
ICE certified coffee stocks fell marginally on Friday to 787,005 bags. Coffee pending grading, however, rose to 279,504 bags. March robusta coffee fell $3, or 0.2%, to $1,875 a tonne.
March London cocoa rose 15 pounds, or 0.7%, to 2,065 pounds per tonne?. Dealers said the recent run-up had been fuelled by fund short covering and a lack of origin selling ahead of the upcoming holidays. March New York cocoa rose $22, or 0.8%, to $2,628 a tonne. Earlier, the contract hit the highest price since early April at $2,651/tonne.