USDA – Weekly Cotton Market Review: August 3, 2012

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Average spot cotton quotations were virtually unchanged from the previous week, according to the USDA, Agricultural Marketing Service’s Cotton Program. Quotations for the base quality of cotton (color 41, leaf 4, staple 34, mike 35-36 and 43 -49, strength 27.0-28.9, uniformity 81.0-81.9) in the seven designated markets averaged 66.13 cents per pound for the week ended Thursday, August 2, 2012. The weekly average was up from 66.05 cents last week, but down from 106.85 cents reported the corresponding period a year ago. Daily average quotations ranged from a high of 66.31 cents on Tuesday, July 31 to a low of 65.79 cents on Wednesday, August 1. Spot transactions reported in the Daily Spot Cotton Quotations for the week ended August 2 totaled 12,262 bales. This compares to 7,424 bales last week and 104 bales reported a year ago. Total spot transactions for the season were 2,388 bales, compared to 104 bales the corresponding week a year ago. The ICE October settlement prices ended the week at 70.44 cents, compared to 70.68 cents last week.

 USDA ANNOUNCES SPECIAL IMPORT QUOTA #25 FOR UPLAND COTTON August 2, 2012

The Department of Agriculture’s Commodity Credit Corporation announced a special import quota for upland cotton that permits importation of a quantity of upland cotton equal to one week’s domestic mill use. The quota will be established on August 9, 2012, allowing importation of 13,517,512 kilograms (62,085 bales) of upland cotton.

Quota number 25 will be established as of August 9, 2012, and will apply to upland cotton purchased not later than November 6, 2012, and entered into the U.S. not later than February 4, 2013. The quota is equivalent to one week’s consumption of cotton by domestic mills at the seasonally-adjusted average rate for the period March 2012 through May 2012, the most recent three months for which data are available.

Future quotas, in addition to the quantity announced, will be established if price conditions warrant.

Prices are in effect from August 3-9, 2012 
Adjustment World Price (AWP) 61.38 ELS Competitiveness Payment 0.00 
Loan Deficiency Payment (LDP) 0.00 Fine Count Adjustment 2011 Crop 0.10 
Coarse Count Adjustment (CCA) 0.00 Fine Count Adjustment 2012 Crop 0.30 
Source: Farm Service Agency, FSA, USDA

Regional Summaries

Southeastern Market

Spot cotton trading was moderate. Supplies were light. Demand was moderate. Producer offerings were light.

Average local spot prices were steady. Trading of CCC loan equities was inactive. No forward contracting activity was reported.

The entire region benefitted from intermittent thunder showers which brought one to two inches of widely scattered precipitation to areas from coastal Alabama to Virginia during the period. Moderate temperatures prevailed in the mid-to-high 90s. Despite the widespread rainfall, localized portions of southeast Alabama and southwest Georgia missed significant precipitation in recent weeks and remained droughty. The crop advanced rapidly in most areas due to consistent moisture received during the season and plant-growth regulators were being applied. According to the National Agricultural Statistics Service Crop Progress Report, squaring was virtually completed and boll-setting was underway on the balance of the crop. Bolls were beginning to crack open in some of the earliest planted fields of south Georgia. Producers monitored fields for insects and plant disease and applied sprays as needed. The undertone was optimistic as crop conditions were rated mostly good-to-excellent in Virginia and fair-to-good elsewhere.

South Central Markets

North Delta

Spot cotton trading was slow. Producer offerings and supplies were light. Demand was light. Average local spot prices were steady. Trading of CCC-loan equities was slow. No forward contracting was reported.

Hot, dry conditions persisted during the week. Daytime highs were mostly in the mid-90s, with heat indexes near 100. Overnight lows were mostly in the low 70s. A few afternoon thunderstorms brought light amounts of precipitation, but the cloud cover helped lower temperatures. The U.S. Drought Monitor reported that the cotton-growing areas in the region were experiencing severe-to-extreme drought conditions. Producers continued to irrigate at full capacity. The crop made good progress, especially in Tennessee. The National Agricultural Statistics Service estimated that boll setting progressed slightly to 94 percent in Arkansas, compared to 40 in Missouri and 70 percent in Tennessee.

Crop advisors reported that an increasing amount of acreage no longer required the application of crop protection chemicals; however, producers were monitoring fields closely for spider mites and bollworms.

Fields required treatments for plant bugs in most areas.

South Delta

Spot cotton trading was inactive. Supplies were light.

Producer offerings were light. Demand was light. Average local spot prices were steady. Trading of CCC loan equities was slow. No forward contracting was reported.

Hot temperatures persisted as daytime highs remained in triple digits with overnight lows in the mid- 70s. The U.S. Drought Monitor reported that a small portion of northwestern Mississippi was experiencing extreme drought conditions; a few areas were abnormally dry. Portions of northeastern Louisiana were rated from abnormally dry to moderate drought conditions as well. The crop made good progress. According to the National Agricultural Statistics Service, boll setting was estimated at 96 percent in Louisiana and 91 percent in Mississippi. An expanding amount of acreage no longer required applications of crop protection chemicals.

Crop advisors reported that bolls could be opening on dryland fields within a few days. Irrigated fields were monitored for bollworms, spider mites, and plant bugs; fields were treated as necessary.

Southwestern Markets

East Texas-Oklahoma

Spot cotton trading was slow. Supplies were moderate.

Demand was light. Average local spot prices were higher. Producer offerings were light. No forward contracting was reported. Trading of CCC-loan equities was inactive. Foreign mill inquiries were moderate. Interest was best from Indonesia, Thailand, and Turkey.

In south Texas, harvesting and ginning expanded throughout the Upper Coast and Rio Grande Valley. Many fields were shredded because of a lack of yield. Most of the gins were operating. The Winter Garden fields were about two weeks away from harvesting.

Crop expectations declined daily as more fields were failed by insurance companies. The Corpus Christi Classing Office expanded operations to keep pace with increased receipts. In central Texas, bolls had begun to crack open and defoliants were applied to dryland fields. The crop is generally two weeks ahead of normal according to local consultants. In Kansas, the relentless heat wave continued to stress fields, with high temperature around 107 degrees. Light rains early in the week provided no relief to the remaining dryland fields. The crop continued to square and set bolls. In Oklahoma, the crop continued to square and had begun to set bolls.

Generally, the crop declined as the drought expanded across the state.

West Texas

Spot cotton trading was slow. Supplies were moderate. Demand was light. Average local spot prices were higher.

Producer offerings were light. No forward contracting was reported. Trading of CCC-loan equities was moderate.

Foreign mill inquiries were moderate. Interest was best from Indonesia, Thailand, and Turkey.

The relentless heat wave continued to stress fields with daytime highs in the low 100s and nighttime lows in the upper 70s. Sunny, hot weather continued to build heat units, rapidly maturing the crop. Some fields needed immediate rainfall to alleviate heat stress. Irrigation struggled to meet the critical demand of many fields that were in peak bloom. Some wells were shut-off to conserve remaining water resources. Cotton was blooming; some dryland fields experienced early cut-out. Abandonment increased as crop adjusters failed some fields that had not advanced. Fields with an increased population of grasshoppers, spider mites, and aphids were treated.

Producers were diligent to control glyphosate resistant pigweed and hoe crews were in the some fields removing the weed before it produced seed. Some fields received a second application of plant-growth regulators.

Western Markets

Desert Southwest (DSW)

Spot cotton trading was inactive. Supplies and demand were light. Average local spot prices were steady. No forward contracting or domestic mill activity was reported. Foreign mill inquiries were light.

Hot, dry conditions dominated the region. Dust storms and isolated rainfall occurred in western and central Arizona. Limited defoliation began in Yuma, Arizona. Open bolls were sighted in some fields. No harvesting was reported. Cooperative extension specialists reported a probable case of glyphosate (Roundup) resistant Palmer amaranth (i.e., carelessweed or pigweed) has been discovered in Arizona. Seed collection and testing was underway.

The crop was rated fair to excellent in Arizona. Precipitation was spotty in cotton-growing areas of New Mexico and El Paso, Texas. Cotton conditions were rated mostly fair in New Mexico. Water deliveries were available through August 10 by irrigation districts. The crop made good progress in El Paso, Texas. Producers were busy managing growth and irrigating. No significant insect pressures were reported.

San Joaquin Valley (SJV)

Spot cotton trading was inactive. Supplies and demand were light. Average local spot prices were steady. No forward contracting or domestic mill activity was reported. Foreign mill inquiries were light. Shippers reported foreign mill interest in Australian and Brazilian cotton.

Triple-digit temperatures dominated the region. The crop made good progress and was rated mostly excellent.

Producer reports indicated that this crop had the potential for high yields. Some producers made first time spot treatments for lygus, mites, and aphids, but mostly beneficial insects kept pest numbers manageable during the growing season. Some early-planted fields were approaching cut-out stage.

American Pima (AP)

Spot cotton trading was inactive. Supplies were moderate. Demand was light. Average local prices were steady. No forward contracting was reported. New-crop prices were around 110.00 cents, UD free, FOB warehouse.

No sales were reported. Foreign mill inquiries were light and for prompt shipment. Interest was best from Pakistan.

Hot, dry conditions were prevalent in the far west. Limited defoliation began in Yuma, Arizona as some producers were preparing to plant vegetables. Harvesting could begin in about 10 days. Ginning was set to begin in September. The crop made good progress in the San Joaquin Valley. Sources indicated that this crop had the potential for high yields. Insect pressures were light and easily controlled. The organic crop made good progress.

Textile Mill

Domestic mill buyers inquired for a light volume of color 41, leaf 5 and better, and staple 33 and longer for prompt fill-in needs. Mill buyers also inquired for a moderate volume of 2012-crop cotton, color 52 and better, leaf 5 and better, and staple 33 and longer for January through March 2013 delivery. No sales were reported.

Most mills operated on a five-to-seven day schedule. Representatives for mills in Vietnam inquired for a moderate volume of color 31, leaf 3, and staple 36 for August September shipment. Demand remained good for any discounted or low-grade varieties.

  Regional Price Information

West Tennessee Dryland Cotton

A heavy volume of mixed lots containing color mostly 31 and 41, leaf mostly 5 and better, staple 36 and longer, mike 35-49, strength 29-31, and uniformity 81-83 sold for around 74.00 cents per pound, FOB car/truck (Rule 5, compression charges paid).

Mixed lots containing color mostly 41, leaf 3-5, staple mostly 34 and longer, mike 48-52, strength 28-31, and uniformity 80-82 sold for around 72.00 cents, same terms as above.

A moderate volume of color 52 and better, leaf 3-5, staple 34-36, mike 48-52, strength 27-30, and uniformity 80-82 sold for around 63.50 cents, same terms as above.

Light volume mixed lots containing color mostly 43 and better, leaf 5-7, staple 35 and 36, mike 35-49, strength 29-31, and uniformity 81-83 sold for around 54.00 cents, same terms as above.

A moderate volume of color 31 and 41, leaf 3 and 4, staple 35 and longer, mike 35-49, strength 28-31, and uniformity 80-82 sold for around 300 points on ICE December futures, same terms as above.

North Delta

A light volume of mostly color 42, leaf 2, staple 33-35, mike 50-52, strength 28-31, and uniformity 79-81 sold for 60.00 cents per pound, FOB car/truck (Rule 5, compression charges paid).

A moderate volume of CCC loan equities traded for around ten cents per pound.

South Delta

A moderate volume of CCC-loan equities traded for around ten cents.

East Texas

In Texas, a light volume of new-crop cotton containing color 21 and 31, leaf 3 and better, staple 36 and 37, mike averaging 48.1, strength averaging 30.7, and uniformity averaging 81.2 sold for around 74.50 cents per pound, FOB car/truck (compression charges not paid).

West Texas

A moderate volume of mixed lots containing color 41 and better, leaf 3 and better, staple 33 and longer, mike 30-47, strength 24-29, and uniformity 78-80 sold for 60.00 to 62.50 cents per pound, FOB car/truck (compression charges not paid).

Mixed lots containing color mostly 22 and better, leaf 2 and better, staple 33 and longer, mike 40-50, strength 26-29, and uniformity 79-80 traded for 64.00 to 67.00 cents, same terms as above.

Mixed lots containing color mostly 41 and better, leaf 6 and better, staple 35 and longer, mike 29-49, strength 26-36, uniformity 77-82, with 75 percent extraneous matter (bark) sold for 51.00 to 59.25 cents, same terms as above.

A moderate volume of CCC-loan equities traded for one to eleven cents.

Southeastern Markets

South Central Markets

Southwestern Markets

Desert Southwest

No trading activity was reported.

San Joaquin Valley

No trading activity was reported.

American Pima

A moderate volume of 2011-crop cotton of mostly color 2 and better, leaf 2 and better, and staple 46 and longer was sold to domestic mills for September through November delivery.

In merchant-to-merchant business, a light volume of color 2, leaf 3, and staple 48 traded for 99.75 cents per pound, UD free, FOB warehouse.

Western Markets

Upland cotton growers in the United States had booked about 10 percent of their expected acreage by the end of July this season. This was below the 26 percent booked through the same period last year. Contracting has been most active in the south central states where about 30 percent of the crop was under contract by the end of July and compares with 64 percent a year earlier. Southeastern states’ growers had forward contracted about 13 percent, compared with 31 percent in 2011. Southwestern states’ growers had contracted about 4 percent of the crop, compared to 14 percent last year. Growers in the western states had 4 percent of the crop under contract and compares with 3 percent at the end of July last year. These estimates were based on the National Agricultural Statistics Board’s June Planted Acreage report and informal surveys made by the USDA, Agricultural Marketing Service, Cotton Program.

 Source: USDA

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