Oil Report

SOFTS-Sugar hits two-year highs; cocoa rallies

(Updates prices, adds details)

LONDON, Jan 14 (Reuters) - Sugar futures on ICE hit two-year highs on Tuesday, extending a rally this year amid tightening supplies and technical buying, while cocoa futures also gained.


* March raw sugar was up 0.28 cents, or 2%, at 14.43 cents per lb at 1519 GMT, having hit 14.48, its highest in two years.

* March white sugar soared $11.5, or 3%, to $394.70 a tonne, having hit a two-year high of $400.

* “Investors, consistent with the swing in momentum, have been heavy buyers, overwhelming continued trade selling. On balance, we think (trade selling) is likely to be a headwind on a rally rather than a cap,” said Commonwealth Bank of Australia.

* Analysts have been widening their sugar deficit forecasts for this season amid signs of lower output in India, Thailand, Mexico, the United States, the European Union and Brazil, though stocks remain ample after two years of surplus production.

* Suedzucker, Europe’s largest sugar refiner, confirmed an improvement in quarterly earnings as stronger bioethanol demand helped offset continued losses in sugar.

* Dealers said funds are expected to continue buying, and have enough ammunition to take prices considerably higher.


* March London cocoa rose 46 pounds, or 2.4%, to 1,946 pounds a tonne, having hit its highest since late November.

* March New York cocoa jumped $46, or 1.8%, to $2,629 a tonne, having hit its highest in a month.

* Cocoa arrivals at ports in top grower Ivory Coast reached 1.259 million tonnes between Oct. 1 and Jan. 12, 2020, exporters estimated, up 1.9% versus the same period last season.

* Ivory Coast’s cocoa growing regions stayed hot and dry over the past week, with farmers hoping to see one more rainfall before the end of the month to boost the cherelles growing on trees in time for the start of the new crop.

* Climatologists at Rockwinds, a cocoa trade house, expect dryer than normal conditions in West Africa in February.

* Swiss chocolate maker Lindt & Spruengli, said the market environment remained very challenging, with consumers preferring healthier snacks.


* March arabica coffee was down 0.1 cents, or 0.1%, to $1.1445 per lb after touching a 1-1/2 month low.

* Arabica has been declining from last month's more than two-year peak, with ICE certified stocks KC-TOT-TOT having increased over the past few weeks following a prolonged decline last year.

* New York March arabica may stabilise around a support at $1.1360 per lb and test a resistance at $1.1710, technical signals indicate.

* March robusta rose $16, or 1.2%, to $1,328 a tonne. (Reporting by Maytaal Angel; Editing by Bernadette Baum and Mark Potter)