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Cotton prices move marginally lower

Apr '07
If you are in for a dime you are in for a dollar-so the adage goes. Such has been a truism in the cotton market for the past four months. The bulls, expecting a run up in prices have stubbornly stayed with their positions. Bears, on the other hand have been successful in throwing up roadblocks at every attempt to move higher.

In between has been a variety of traders willing to bid the market higher when they felt prices were a bit too low, and likewise, willing to bid the market lower when they felt it to be too high. Thus, cotton prices have traded a five cent range for four months, with most of the trading between a narrower three cent 52 to 55 cent price range.

Consequently, essentially all traders have maintained their market positions as cotton has established an equilibrium price level near the 54 cent mark. The Contrary Opinion-Bullish Consensus Report for cotton has been very steady all year-44%-thus, adding to the suggestion that the market is in equilibrium. (This week's Contrary Opinion Report suggests that 44% of the analysts are bullish and 54% are bearish, i.e., about half bullish and half bearish).

The ready supply of U.S. cotton available to the world export market has, and will continue to keep a heavy hat on any attempt to move prices higher. The primary 52-55 cent trading range will prevail into May. Last week's March U.S. Cotton Planting Intentions Report, potentially very bullish, was met with at best a yawn, as cotton prices moved marginally lower.

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