DTN Cotton Close: Slightly Higher on Neutral Numbers

Young cotton field. ©Debra L Ferguson Stock Photography

The cotton market finished its Friday trading session fractionally higher. Traders were essentially anticipating bearish news on USDA’s monthly crop report, but such was not necessarily the case. To that end, the government tabulators left domestic production, exports and ending stocks all unchanged. It had been widely thought exports would be trimmed and ending stocks hiked. However, that was not the case.

The world supply-demand numbers were basically idled as well, although there were a few accounting adjustments. That is, beginning stocks were raised 350,000 bales, production was lifted 440,000 bales (Brazil), consumption was off 500,000, exports were down 140,000 bales and ending stock rose some 600,000 bales to 76.09 million bales.

For the week, May cotton was down 0.36 cent. However, spot March cotton expired on Thursday at 71.90 cents, leaving a glaring switch-of-contract gap. Some traders see that difference as a technical negative for the market, begging to be filled. Into next week, traders will be focused on the U.S./China trade talks and planting intentions. Although, both of those events are expected to happen towards the end of March, the market’s nature is to anticipate the probable outcomes in advance.

For Friday, May cotton settled at 73.49 cents, up 0.38 cent, July finished at 74.63 cents, up 0.33 cent and December closed at 73.50 cents, up 0.12 cents. Friday’s estimated volume was 23,400 contracts. Weekly volume was at 154,300 contracts, up 44,240 contracts than last Friday.

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