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Cotton's trading range tightened last week

Mar '07
West Texas had wide spread soaking most of weekend. As of late Sunday, rain was falling in every direction of Lubbock. Virtually every official and/or Mesonet gauge had bountiful three and four day totals. The subsoil profile for milo, corn or cotton has got to look super. While the optimum planting period is generally thought of between May 5 and May 20, planting in the southern areas such as Gaines County will begin in just a few weeks.

Trading ended the week dull and directionless. Neither a bullish WSJ story or MarketWatch article could spark sufficient buying to do much more than help build the open interest. With next Friday's Prospective Plantings on top of us, chances are that prices will continue in their narrow trading range but with a bit of a bearish bias.

Proximity of the report should cause some apprehension about moving too far off center prior to the report. However, with open interest at an all-time high and specs so evenly split, any significant erosion in prices could possibly provide a very quick dip.

May cotton lost 64 points on the week. July finished the week 38 lower while New crop December, was 4 points higher for the week.

We are one week into the very popular seasonal trade of long December cotton against short July cotton. This season trade had worked 12 of the last 15 years according to Moore Research, the industry leader in historical trends. On Friday, March 16, Dec/July traded as close as 385 points. LastThursday, they traded as wide as 455. Dec/July settled at 425 on Friday.

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