Weekly Cotton Market Review – USDA

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Average quotations were 335 points higher than the previous week, according to the USDA, Agricultural Marketing Service’s Cotton and Tobacco Program. Quotations for the base quality of cotton (color 41, leaf 4, staple 34, mike 35-36 and 43-49, strength 27.0-28.9, uniformity 81.0-81.9) in the seven designated markets averaged 78.60 cents per pound for the week ending Thursday, March 1, 2018.

The weekly average was up from 75.25 last week and 73.20 cents reported the corresponding period a year ago. Daily average quotations ranged from a low of 77.81 cents Friday, February 23 to a high of 79.38 cents Wednesday, February 28. Spot transactions reported in the Daily Spot Cotton Quotations for the week ended March 1 totaled 74,941 bales. This compares to 83,744 bales reported last week and 58,171 spot transactions reported the corresponding week a year ago.

Total spot transactions for the season were 1,553,448 bales compared to 1,386,903 bales the corresponding week a year ago. The ICE May settlement prices ended the week at 81.81 cents, compared to 79.47 cents last week.

Southeastern Markets Regional Summary

Spot cotton trading was moderate. Supplies and producer offerings were moderate. Demand was moderate. Average local spot prices were higher. Trading of CCC-loan equities was inactive.

Partly cloudy conditions prevailed over the lower Southeast during much of the period with variable daytime high temperatures in the mid-60s to low 80s. Widespread shower activity brought rainfall to areas across Alabama, Georgia, and the Florida panhandle throughout the week.

Day-to-day accumulated precipitation totals measured around one-half of an inch along the Gulf and Atlantic coastal areas.Heavier precipitation totals of 1 to 2 inches were observed in central Alabama. Outside activities were limited, due to the wet conditions.

According to the U.S. Drought Monitor, the rains in Alabama reduced short-term precipitation deficits and helped streamflow recover, resulting in reduced abnormally dry and moderate drought conditions. However, in central Georgia, moderate drought expanded due to unseasonably warm conditions, which helped to dry out soils.

Clear to cloudy conditions were observed across the Carolinas and Virginia during the period with daytime highs in the upper 50s to low 80s. Widespread showers brought from trace amounts to around one and one-half of an inch of precipitation to areas throughout the upper Southeast.

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Despite the rainfall, moderate drought conditions persisted in portions of Virginia along the North Carolina border, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor. Fieldwork was limited. Ginning was nearing completion throughout the region.

Textile Mill

Demand was good for color 41, leaf 4, and staple 34 for second through fourth quarter 2018 delivery. No sales were reported. Most mills have covered their immediate-to-nearby raw cotton needs. Yarn demand was moderate. Most mills operated five to seven days.

Demand through export channels was moderate. Agents for mills in China purchased a moderate volume of color 31 and better, leaf 3, and staple 36 for April shipment. Demand was good throughout the Far East for any discounted styles of cotton.

Trading

  • A light volume of color 31 and 41, leaf 2-4, staple mostly 35-38, mike 43-49, strength 28-30, and uniformity 81-83 sold for around 82.25 cents per pound, FOB car/truck (Rule 5, compression charges paid).
  • A light volume of color mostly 41, leaf 5 and 6, staple 36 and 37, mike 37-49, strength 27-30, uniformity 80-83, and containing approximately 25 percent extraneous matter sold for around 79.50 cents, same terms as above.
  • A light volume of color mostly 41 and 51, leaf 2-4, staple 32 and longer, mike 37-49, strength 24-28, and uniformity 79-81 sold for around 78.50 cents, same terms as above.
  • A light volume of color mostly 41, leaf 6, staple mostly 38, mike 43-49, strength 28-31, and uniformity 81-83 sold for around 76.75 cents, same terms as above.
  • A light volume of color 31 and 41, leaf 3 and 4, staple 36 and 37, mike 43-49, strength 27-30, and uniformity 80-82 sold for around 325 points on ICE May futures, FOB car/truck, Georgia terms (Rule 5, compression charges paid, 30 days free storage).

South Central Markets Regional Summary

North Delta

Spot cotton trading was slow. Supplies of available cotton were light. Demand was light. Average local spot prices were higher. Trading of CCC-loan equities was slow. No forward contracting was reported. Cotton was being delivered to fulfill contracts.

Heavy rain showers continued to pound the region, accompanied by strong winds and thunderstorms. Structural damage from a tornado was reported in northeastern Arkansas. Approximately 3 inches of rain was reported in most places, while isolated areas received up to 4 inches.

River flood warnings and flood watches remained in effect throughout the region. Property damage, due to flooding, was reported along river bottoms and in low-lying areas in northern areas. Spring-like conditions prevailed with temperatures in the 70s. Overnight lows were in the 40s.

Producers attended various industry economic and agronomic workshops and meetings, including the Mid-South Farm and Gin Show. According to the U.S. Drought Monitor, soil moisture levels have improved greatly in the cotton-producing areas of the region; abnormal dryness-to-moderate drought was eliminated in central Arkansas and Missouri. Adequate soil moisture levels existed throughout the region. Producers considered their planting options and prepared to book seed accordingly.

South Delta

Spot cotton trading was inactive. Supplies of available cotton were light. Demand was light. Average local spot prices were higher. Trading of CCC-loan equities was inactive. No forward contracting was reported. Cotton was being delivered to fulfill contracts.

Heavy rain showers brought dangerous amounts of rain to areas already inundated throughout the region. Strong thunderstorms and high winds were also reported. Approximately 5 inches of rain was reported in most places; some areas reportedly received up to 6 inches. River flood warnings and flood watches remained in effect throughout the region; damage to property was reported to structures along river bottoms. Warm daytime temperatures were in the 80s. Overnight lows were in the 40s.

Producers attended, or made plans to attend, various industry economic and agronomic workshops and meetings, including the Mid-South Farm and Gin Show in Memphis, TN. According to the U.S. Drought Monitor, several 2-category improvements were made and severe and extreme drought was eliminated in several areas, thanks to nearly 10 inches of rain accumulations over the past two weeks.

A portion of central Mississippi remained abnormally dry, and more rainfall will be needed to recharge ponds and groundwater supplies. Producers considered their planting options and some had purchased seed to meet their needs.

Trading

North Delta

  • A light volume of 2016-crop cotton, color 21 and 31, leaf 4 and better, staple 36 and 37, mike averaging 42.6, strength averaging 30.3, and uniformity averaging 81.5 traded at around 80.50 cents per pound, FOB car/truck (Rule 5, compression charges paid).
  • A light volume of CCC-loan equities traded for 25.00 to 27.00 cents.

South Delta

  • No trading activity was reported.

Southwestern Markets Regional Summary

East Texas

Spot cotton trading was active. Supplies and producer offerings were moderate. Demand was moderate. Average local spot prices were higher. Producer interest in forward contracting was moderate. Trading of CCC-loan equities was active. Foreign inquiries were moderate. Interest was best from Indonesia, Taiwan, and Turkey.

Planting was interrupted by intermittent rain and foggy conditions in the Rio Grande Valley. Daytime temperature highs were in the low 70s to upper 80s, and overnight lows were in the low 40s to mid-70s. Rainfall hindered planting activities; however, the precipitation will benefit irrigation.

Fieldwork was limited in southern and eastern Texas, which was owed to thunderstorms leaving fields saturated. Ellis County received 4 to 7 inches of rainfall; some fields were underwater.

Ginning continued in Kansas and Oklahoma under mostly sunny and windy conditions. Daytime highs were in the low 30s to upper 60, and nighttime low temperatures were in the teens to upper 40s. Around one to one and one-half inches of intermittent rainfall was received in some parts of Oklahoma, but more rain is needed to help alleviate droughty conditions. Producers booked planting seed.

West Texas

Spot cotton trading was active. Supplies and producer offerings were moderate. Demand was moderate. Average local spot prices were higher. Producer interest in forward contracting was light. Trading of CCC-loan equities was active. Foreign inquiries were moderate. Interest was best from Indonesia, Taiwan, and Turkey.

Daytime temperature highs were in the upper 50s to 60s, and nighttime lows were in the single digits to upper 40s. Fieldwork was limited by frequent periods of gusty winds up to 50 miles per hour. Some areas, mostly off the Caprock, received drizzle, hail, and rainfall. Droughty conditions persisted in the High Plains.

Some gin managers indicated that the 2017-crop caused ginning difficulties because of the stick content, fiber quality, and fires caused by the warm, dry climate. Approximately 25 gins continued submitting samples to the Abilene, Lamesa, and Lubbock Classing Offices. Some of those gins expect to finish within two weeks, while others plan to operate for four more weeks.

Fieldwork was more active in the southern counties that contained sandier soils. Producers were busy deep breaking the soil, shredding stalks, reshaping beds, and applying compost. Pre-plant herbicides were applied when the winds were calm. Planting seed was booked.

Trading

East Texas

  • In Oklahoma, a moderate volume of mostly color 31, leaf 3, staple 37 and 38, mike 37-41, strength 29-32, and uniformity 81-83 sold for around 78.75 cents per pound, FOB car/truck (compression charges not paid).
  • A moderate volume of color 31, leaf 3 and 4, staple 36 and 37, mike 34-38, strength averaging 30.5, and uniformity 80-81 sold for around 77.75 cents, same terms as above.
  • A moderate volume of color 31, leaf 3 and 4, staple 34 and 35, mike 41-45, strength averaging 28.9, and uniformity 78-82 sold for around 74.75 cents, same terms as above.
  • A heavy volume of CCC-loan equities traded for 18.75 to 21.75 cents.

West Texas

  • A moderate volume of color 21 and 31, leaf 2 and 3, staple 34 and longer, mike 35-43, strength 26-32, and uniformity 78-81 sold for around 75.50 cents per pound, FOB car/truck (compression charges not paid).
  • A moderate volume of color 21 and 31, leaf 4 and better, staple 36-40, mike 30-36, strength 28-33, and uniformity 76-81 sold for around 69.75 cents, same terms as above.
  • A light volume of color 33 and better, leaf 4 and better, staple 33 and longer, mike 34-37, strength 26-28, uniformity 77-80, and 50 percent extraneous matter sold for around 67.50 cents, same terms as above.
  • Mixed lots containing a light volume of mostly color 31, leaf 3-5, staple 36 and 37, mike 26-32, strength 27-30, uniformity 77-80, and 50 percent extraneous matter sold for around 55.25 cents, same terms as above.
  • A heavy volume of CCC-loan equities traded for 19.75 to 20.50 cents.

Western Markets Regional Summary

Desert Southwest (DSW)

Spot cotton trading was active. Supplies and producer offerings were moderate. Demand was moderate. Average local spot prices were higher. No forward contracting or domestic mill activity was reported. Foreign mill inquiries were steady.

Daytime temperatures were in the mid-60s in Arizona. Approximately one-quarter of an inch of rainfall was received mid-week in central Arizona. It is too soon to report if any freeze damage was sustained in the early-planted Yuma crop. No rainfall was recorded in Yuma. Planting had resumed as conditions were warmer. Ginning continued in central Arizona.

The National Agricultural Statistics Service’s (NASS) Arizona Monthly Crop Progress and Condition report released February 26, indicated 2 percent of the Arizona crop has been planted. Topsoil moisture was rated 12 percent short, 84 adequate, and 4 percent surplus. Windy conditions throughout the month of February dried soil conditions in New Mexico. Topsoil moisture was rated 50 percent very short, 38 short, and 11 percent adequate, according to NASS. Field preparations continued.

San Joaquin Valley (SJV)

Spot cotton trading was inactive. Supplies were light. Demand was moderate. Average local spot prices were higher. No forward contracting or domestic mill activity was reported. Foreign mill inquiries were light. Interest was best from Pakistan for roller ginned Upland.

Rain was received mid-week. Approximately one-tenth of an inch up to one-quarter of an inch of moisture was recorded throughout the Valley. The Sacramento area received a mix of hail and snow. A second system arrived on Thursday, March 1 and brought heavier amounts of rain to the central Valley. The storms augmented the snowpack in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. Hopefully, Miracle March is on it’s way for California.

American Pima (AP)

Spot cotton trading was inactive. Supplies and producer offerings were light. Demand was light. Average local spot prices were steady. No forward contracting or domestic mill activity was reported. Foreign mill inquiries were light and mostly for 2018-crop cotton. Interest was best from China.

Temperatures were in the 50s and 60s in the Far West. Rain was received mid-week in Arizona and California. Precipitation totals measured around one-half of an inch. No rainfall was recorded in New Mexico and El Paso, TX. Fresh snowfall boosted the snowpack for the Sierra Nevada Mountain range. Planting was limited in Yuma, AZ. It is too soon to report if any freeze damage was sustained in the early-planted Yuma crop the previous week. Field preparations continued in the region.

Trading

Desert Southwest

  • In Arizona, a heavy volume of color mostly 21 and better, leaf 3 and better, staple 35 and longer, mike averaging 42.7, strength averaging 31.4, and uniformity averaging 81.6 sold for around 82.50 cents per pound, uncompressed, FOB warehouse.
  • In New Mexico, a light volume of mostly color 31, leaf 2 and 3, staple 32-36, mike 34-44, strength averaging 26.4, uniformity averaging 78.0, and 25 percent extraneous matter sold for around 69.50 cents, FOB car/truck (compression charges not paid).
  • A moderate volume of 2018-crop cotton was sold to mills in Indonesia for November 2018 through June 2019shipme nt.

San Joaquin Valley

  • No trading activity was reported.

American Pima

  • No trading activity was reported.

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