Orange juice futures fall 4 percent on signs of drop in demand
* Prices poised for 7-percent weekly loss
* Demand report shows sales fall despite lower prices
* Open interest near lowest since at least January 2004 -ICE data
NEW YORK, Oct 17 (Reuters) - Orange juice futures sank the most in a month on Thursday in an investor selloff on signs of depressed demand.
The most-active January orange juice contract on ICE Futures U.S. settled down 4.85 cents, or 3.9 percent, at $1.1935 per lb, the biggest down day since mid-September.
Front-month November futures sank even more drastically, down 6.2 cents, or 5 percent, to finish at $1.1750, weighed as investors rolling positions added pressure to spot prices.
The second month is poised for a 7-percent loss this week, the biggest down week in a month, after a Florida report showed demand has fallen despite lower prices.
Total orange juice sales were 40.38 million gallons in the last four-week period of the 2012/13 crop year, down 3.9 percent from a similar period a year ago, a retail sales report published by the Florida Department of Citrus showed this week.
Sales for the 12/13 season were down 1.1 percent to 563.21 million gallons from the previous year.
"The appetite for investment is just not there. There's no room for orange juice: Open interest and the demand figures are just awful," said James Cordier, founder and president of Liberty Trading Group in Tampa, Florida.
Open interest totaled 15,622 contracts on Wednesday, hovering near some of the lowest levels through at least January 2004, according to data available on the ICE website.
Any weather-risk premium largely evaporated from the market after Tropical Storm Karen dissipated earlier this month and left Florida's groves largely unscathed.
Florida's main growing regions are expected to see little risk of frost damage for months.
Orange juice suffered losses despite a sharply lower U.S. dollar. The softer currency support dollar-traded commodities, making them less expensive to holders of other currencies.
"You find out what the dog markets are when the dollar is getting crushed like this," Cordier said.
(Reporting By Chris Prentice; Editing by Grant McCool)