The cotton market finished sharply lower Thursday, as the trade nearly retraced the bullish move of Wednesday. At the outset of last night’s trading, spot March posted its high on its opening and from that moment, it was all downhill.
At one time spot March was trading consistently under the 70-cent mark, which would not have negated all of January’s up-move, but caused the market to close down-on-the-year. However, two positives, albeit small ones, from Thursday’s bloody session are that the market closed above the psychological 70-cent mark and volume was nowhere near the amount traded over the prior two sessions.
Friday, USDA will issue its weekly exports-sales report, and the market is obviously in dire need of strong numbers. However, Friday’s report will also be the first since the inking of the phase one trade deal. Although, we have not seen evidence of fresh Chinese buying, it may be that the market sees a big shipment number of Chinese cotton previously bought.
Such a revelation ought to thrill the bulls. As it stands, spot March enters the last trading day for this abbreviated week 1.12 cents lower, week-over-week.
The current coronavirus has caused the Chinese government to isolate several cities with populations of millions. Thus, with the Lunar New Year celebration fast approaching, which is a very popular travel time, it is thought that some air travel will be either reduced or restricted. Thus, the energy futures were sharply lower. To that end, it is our understanding that polyester can arrive in the U.S. at 62-cents per pound.
Thursday, March cotton closed at 70.03 cents, down 1.10 cents, July finished at 71.59 cents, down 1.15 cents and December closed at 70.70 cents, down 1.35 cents. Thursday’s estimated volume was 35,843 contracts traded. This number compares to the average volume of the last two days of 56,300 contracts.