April 12, 2013 / 3:02 PM / 5 years ago

ICE raw sugar open interest climbs to highest since June 2008

NEW YORK, April 12 (Reuters) - Total open interest in ICE raw sugar futures <0#SB:> rose to the highest level in almost five years on April 11, exchange data showed on Friday.

Open interest reached 881,707 contracts on Thursday, the highest level since June 2008 and up 3,663 lots from the previous session, according to ICE Futures U.S. data.

Spot-month raw sugar futures on ICE were up 0.26 cent, or 1.46 percent, at 18.10 cents a lb by 10:48 a.m. EDT (1448 GMT) on Friday, heading for a gain of more than 2 percent from last week’s close.

The contract has been inching up from a more than 2-1/2 year low of 17.47 cents posted earlier this month. Open interest in the market has been climbing.

Speculators hold a record bearish bet in raw sugar futures and options. In the week ended April 2, noncommercial dealers boosted their net short position by 60 percent to a record 100,669 contracts, according to U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission data. (Reporting by Chris Prentice; editing by Jim Marshall)

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