Cotton stocks in third consecutive season of decline in 2009/10

September 22, 2009 - Global

The latest U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) projections for 2009/10 indicate that world cotton stocks are expected to decline for the third consecutive season.

Global ending stocks are currently forecast at 56.3 million bales for 2009/10, 5.2 million bales (8.5 percent) below 2008/09 and the lowest since 2003/04s 48.1 million bales.

For 2009/10, the world stock reduction is largely attributable to China—the leading cotton producer and consumer—where 45 percent of the global decline is expected. However, stocks are expected to decline in most of the cotton-producing countries this season. In China, stocks are forecast to decline 2.3 million bales to 17.6 million, their lowest in 7 years. U.S. ending stocks are expected at 5.6 million bales in 2009/10, 600,000 bales below 2008/09 and the lowest in 5 years.

Meanwhile, stocks in India—the second largest producer and consumer—are forecast only marginally lower and will likely play a key role in the global trade of raw cotton in 2009/10.