Top Stories
Top Stories
Wires

SOFTS-Raw sugar falls to four-month low, robusta at three-year low

(Recasts with updated prices, market activity, comments, adds NEW YORK to dateline) NEW YORK/LONDON, May 1 (Reuters) - Raw sugar prices on ICE fell to their lowest in about four months, pressured by weaker energy prices, and robusta prices tumbled to a new three-year low amid plentiful supplies and broader commodity market weakness. The 19-market Thomson Reuters Core Commodity Index touched its weakest levels in about six weeks.

SUGAR

* July raw sugar settled down 0.13 cent, or about 1.1%, at 12.21 cents per lb after dipping to a Jan. 4 low of 12.10 cents.

* Prices were pressured by lower energy prices, dealers said.

* Lower oil prices can discourage cane mills from producing biofuel ethanol, instead encouraging the production of sugar.

* Sugar fundamentals were also a factor, dealers said, given continued expectations of a strong Indian crop.

* Dealers noted there appeared little appetite to receive sugar against the May contract which expired on Tuesday. The delivery was the smallest since July 2014.

* ICE August white sugar settled down $3.20, or 1%, at $331.70 per tonne.

COFFEE

* ICE July arabica coffee settled down 2.05 cents, or 2.2%, at 91.10 cents per lb, after dipping to 90.85 cents, the lowest in nearly two weeks.

* The prospect of another large harvest in Brazil this year continued to keep the market on the defensive, dealers said.

* July robusta coffee settled down $31, or 2.2%, at $1,376 per tonne, after dropping to 1,365, the lowest since February 2016.

* Prices continue to be pressured by a large crop in top grower Vietnam, said Jack Scoville, vice president at Price Futures Group.

* Global coffee exports fell 3.8% year-on-year in March to 10.98 million bags, data from the International Coffee Organization showed. Still, total exports for the first six months of the 2018/19 season were higher than in the previous season.

COCOA

* July New York cocoa settled down $44, or 1.9%, at $2,315 per tonne, after falling to $2,310.

* Dealers were watching the $2,311 level, the 38.2% Fibonacci retracement of the April 11 high and April 24 low. The break below that level could be a negative signal, one dealer said.

* July London cocoa settled down 27 pounds, or 1.5%, at 1,772 pounds per tonne after earlier touching a nine-month high of 1,820 pounds.

* This was the contract's first negative finish in five sessions.

* Dealers said technical influences dominated, with many producers sidelined due to public holidays in many countries including top grower Ivory Coast.

* They noted good demand continued to underpin prices although supplies remained plentiful.

(Reporting by Ayenat Mersie in New York and Nigel Hunt in London; editing by Emelia Sithole-Matarise and James Dalgleish)