ICE Cotton Update
Cotton edges lower as harvest nears; export sales data in focus
ICE cotton futures dipped slightly on Wednesday, as traders geared up for the upcoming weekly export sales data, with the harvest season on the horizon.
The cotton contract for December fell 0.22 cent, or 0.2%, to 93.44 cents per lb, by 12:56 p.m. ET (1656 GMT). It traded within a range of 92.98 to 93.78 cents a lb.
Wednesday’s move is muted as “we are right on the edge of the harvest, and the funds are pretty much loaded on the long side,” said Keith Brown, principal at cotton brokers Keith Brown and Co in Georgia. “We’re probably seeing some producer hedging and price fixation.”
Market focus now shifts to the next weekly export sales report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), due on Thursday.
“The markets are hoping to see that China is back in business,” Brown said about the report. Last week, the USDA reported net sales of 453,000 Running Bales (RB) for 2021/2022 in the week to Sept. 2, of which 261,500 RB were for China.
The dollar index eased against its rivals, making cotton less expensive for buyers holding other currencies, limiting its losses.
“The remnants of Nicholas will (mostly) spare the mid-south crop but is now bringing unwanted rain across the Gulf Coast region of the southeastern states,” Louis Rose, director of research and analytics at Tennessee-based Rose Commodity Group, said in a note.
Tropical depression Nicholas, last reported to be about 165 miles west of New Orleans, Louisiana, is set to dissipate some time on Thursday night or Friday, the U.S. National Hurricane Center (NHC) said.
Total futures market volume fell by 10,550 to 7,415 lots. Data showed total open interest gained 1,744 at 273,192 contracts in the previous session.