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Cotton futures regain their bullish tone
Feb '08
Cotton futures regained their bullish tone this week despite USDA's February supply demand report that showed larger ending stocks in the U.S., China and the Indian Subcontinent. Yet, the bullish tone remains for the December 2008 and the 2009 contract months.

The nearby March, with option expiry, is set to move to first notice day with the May contract becoming the lead month. The price tone for the near term appears bearish from a pure cotton fundamental view, and sharply contrasts with a strongly bullish tone for grains and oilseeds.

The bullish tone in those markets, coupled with a continued decline in cotton acreage will support the New York May and July contracts within their current range. In fact, despite this near term bearish scenario, the New York contract was up.

Consistent with expectations, USDA reduced exports for the U.S. by 300,000 bales, down to 15.7 million. There were no other supply demand changes, thus ending stocks for the 2007-08 marketing year are now estimated at 8.2 million bales, up 300,000 bales from last month.

The bigger news was associated with world production and consumption and their respective effects on world stocks. World production was raised one million bales and was now estimated at 119.21 million bales. World consumption was reduced 1.7 million bales and estimated at 126.32 million. Thus, the current estimate for world ending stocks is 57.33 million bales, up 2.58 million from the January estimate.

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