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Export sales amount to around 1.1mn bales

Apr '07
NY futures fell sharply since our last report of two weeks ago, with May losing 308 points to close at 51.12 cents, while December gave up 177 points to close at 57.85 cents.

After having spent exactly six weeks in a very tight range, with May closing no lower than 53.05 and no higher than 54.55 cents during that period, the market finally broke through support on Monday, losing 170 points over the last four sessions.

While it had to be expected that speculators would pressure the market after this chart violation, we were somewhat surprised by the severity of this decline, especially since there were several encouraging developments on the fundamental side this week.

First of all, we have noticed a definite pick-up in US export business in recent weeks, as evidenced by yet another good export sales report this morning, which showed that during the week ending April 5th no less than 362'700 running bales of Upland and Pima found a home.

Over the last three weeks, US export sales amounted to around 1.1 mio bales, with China taking about 0.6 mio bales. Total commitments for the season now tally at 10.5 mio statistical bales, of which 6.4 mio bales have been shipped so far.

Last week's shipments of 295'000 running bales were still over 100'000 bales shy of the pace needed to make the reduced USDA export projection of 13.5 mio bales, but we believe that we will see a pronounced increase over the coming weeks.

Assuming that the US would have to sell around 14.7 mio bales to allow for 13.5 mio bales to be shipped by the end of July, weekly export sales need to average only around 290'000 bales until the end of the marketing year.

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