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Cotton market gradually settles down
15
Mar '08
Friday session opened up in slow motion as cotton market gradually settles down. Volume was fairly light during early morning trading and ended with near 30,000 contracts in futures and 48,000 contracts in options.

The overall commodities market took a hit today with soybeans traded limit down and Chicago wheat traded close to limit down. The roller coaster style movement still dominated the whole session.

As not much action came from the spec side and the funds, all months drifted at the lower side of today's trading range caused by profit taking and bearish options activities. The noticeable options activities include some strangle selling of December 88 cent puts and May 92 cent calls, as well as some volume of December 95 cent and dollar call spreads at 100 debit.

However, fixation orders on open sales are expected to come in at the lower 70's basis May08, which will provide certain support for the market. Today's session settled with May and July contracts down 150 points and December contract down 110 points.

It seems that negative news is coming from all angles. U.S. dollar is setting new low every day and Fed's actions seem not to be solving the main economic problems. Consumer confidence has hit the 16 year low.

Surprise hit the market when Bear Stearns, one of the nation's biggest investment banks, announced that it had turned to a rival bank and the federal government for emergency funds. Bear Stearns' stock fell nearly 50% during the day. As opinions regarding the country's economic outlook vary, the near future doesn't look bright.

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