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ECOM daily cotton markets recap - Feb 12, 2007

Feb '07
There were no surprises or funky activity with the March options expiration on Friday, despite having settled and tempted near the 53 cent level for much of the session. Therefore it was onto a new, option less outlook for the March this morning, and with little in the way of over the weekend export business, the market initially opened very steadily.

The E-session indicated a decent amount of volume prior to the open outcry session, though this was predominantly in the March / May spread. The opening in the pit did see a little early selling, with the March initially opening down around 10 and then the May down 25.

Prices stalled around these levels for a while before finding some hedge fund selling soon after the re-opening. Of note was the May and July contracts leading prices down, as well as weakness in the Dec 07 contract. Over $2 losses in crude oil were weighing on the entire commodity complex, and this spilt over on Cotton through the mid session.

Commercial paper was a good buyer on the way down, profit taking on short positions as well as price fixing some outstanding sales. In the options pit one of the largest Merchants was spotted covering short May calls, buying up to 1000 of the 57 and 58 calls.

Two separate groups were spotted buying 500 each of the May 53 puts for 175-180 points. Prices attempted to bounce a few times, but remained under pressure all session before closing with active losses of 34 to 60 points.

The March / May spread was again very heavily traded between 30 and 45 points, officially settling at 43 points premium to May. The Electronic ICE exchange set it's highest daily volume of 13,272 lots which added to the open outcry 44,607 lots volume to make 57,879 lots.

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