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Weather dumps trouble on cotton crop

01
Jun '09
More rains around Lubbock last night!! At 9:30 last evening radar showed a band of showers that stretched from Hereford to Seminole.

Despite insufficient rains in West Texas and more unwanted rains in the Delta over the Memorial Day weekend, cotton prices started off last week in trouble then spent most of the holiday shortened week trying to get out of the hole. Thursday' action was discouraging for the bulls as prices moved to new lows for the month and some technical sell signals began to show up. However, Export interest picked up at the lower levels as Texas cotton became quite competitive when the market fell to new lows for the month.

Then on Friday, cotton prices exploded when the dollar collapsed and the CRB Index rose to new highs for the year. The growing US debt seems to be escalating the out flow U.S. dollar-dominated deposits is now escalating, leading to collapse in the dollar. The various commodity indices still look to move higher. The collapse of the dollar to new lows for the week took that index to lowest level since Dec 19, 2008 – while the fear of inflation took the CRB Index to the highest level since November 12.

In response, Cotton moved limit up the first time well before options opened with breathtaking speed, In fact, the final 183 points came in less than one minute. After backing off and catching its breath, it roared back to limit but this time traded synthetically above limit up in the option ring. While it didn't close limit up, it was a strong performance. Friday's move caught the bears totally off-guard as well as those bullish but from lower levels. For the second consecutive week, Cotton prices reversed directions each day.

July cotton ended the week at 5697 (+274) down only 14 points for the week but up 262 points for the month. December did even better finishing week at 6085 up 47 points for the week and up 339 for the month.

It is not clear why but the auctions from the Chinese government owned stocks have been luke warm at best. Guesses are that either their minimum offering prices was either too high to be profitable to mills, problems with credit or even the possibility that their mills might have had bigger inventories than previously thought. Whatever the reason, minimum selling prices were reduced over the weekend.

Export sales while not nearly as robust as we got spoiled to as the market bottomed and started up, they still continue at a surprisingly good pace. Despite US growths being knocked completely out of the A Index, Total sales were still over 150,000 bales. Through Thursday night, the A Index dropped 150 points for the week.

The export business this past week may be due to the fact that Texas cotton finished the week through Thursday in the NO.4 slot and only 75 points above the cheapest. Consequently, we may have an even better export sales report next week. Some traders believe that exports in this month's supply/demandreport might possibly be raised to the point that they more than offset any losses in the domestic mill sector. However, in all likelihood, Fridays rally took us out right out of the competition.


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