SOFTS-Raw sugar prices slide, focus on March expiry

Credit: REUTERS/Peter Nicholls

Updates prices at 1453 GMT

LONDON, Feb 29 (Reuters) - Raw sugar futures on ICE fell sharply on Thursday with the focus on the expiry of the March contract later in the day while cocoa regained some ground after the prior session's steep fall.

SUGAR

* March raw sugar SBH4, which expires on Thursday, fell 4.8% to 22.86 cents per lb by 1453 GMT.

* Dealers said they appeared to be limited appetite to receive sugar, reinforcing concerns about weak demand.

* A delivery of around 800,000 to 900,000 metric tons was expected, broadly in line with the average for a March contract.

* Talk that India's crop could be slightly larger than expected contributed to the decline in prices and has prompted some to expect a global surplus in the 2023/24 season.

* The International Sugar Organization (ISO) on Wednesday, however, forecast a small global deficit in 2023/24.

* May white sugar LSUc1 fell 2.6% to $618.30 a ton.

COCOA

* May London cocoa LCCc2 was up 1% at 5,187 pounds a metric ton although prices remained well below a record high of 5,605 pounds set on Monday.

* Dealers said the market had suffered an expected setback after climbing by more than 50% in one month but fundamentals remain supportive following poor crops in Ivory Coast and Ghana, the world's top two producers.

* May New York cocoa CCc2 rose 1% to $6,052 a ton.

COFFEE

* May robusta coffee LRCc2 rose 0.4% to $3,057 a ton.

* Prices for futures of arabica and robusta coffees at the ICE exchange are expected to end 2024 below current levels, as well as lower than where they ended last year, a Reuters poll of 10 traders and analysts showed on Thursday.

* May arabica coffee KCc2 fell 0.55% to $1.8075 per lb.

(Reporting by Nigel Hunt; Editing by Emelia Sithole-Matarise)

((nigel.hunt@thomsonreuters.com; +44 (0) 7990 561421; Reuters Messaging: nigel.hunt.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net ))

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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