Cotton futures end near flat ahead of WASDE report

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ICE cotton futures ended almost flat in low volume trading on Wednesday as markets waited for the key supply and demand estimates report on Thursday. Cotton contracts for December settled down 0.02 cent, or 0.03 percent, at 71.11 cents per lb. The contract touched a high of 71.20 cents, a peak since June 14.

The US Department of Agriculture’s World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) report and the weekly US export sales data will be released on Thursday. “Our market will certainly take direction from Thursday’s numbers … This is the first month where actual field data will be included,” Ron Lee, general manager at McCleskey Cotton in Bronwood, Georgia, said in a note. “My current guess on the crop is 19.4 million bales, while the USDA has been carrying 19.0 million bales since acreage was set in May. Most in the industry are thinking the crop is 18.0 – 18.5 million bales, which if realized should keep a firm bid to the market.”

Total futures market volume fell by 1,448 to 17,608 lots. Data showed total open interest gained 2,129 to 219,092 contracts in the previous session. The dollar index was down 0.11 percent. The Thomson Reuters CoreCommodity CRB Index, which tracks 19 commodities, was up 0.26 percent. Certificated cotton stocks deliverable as of August 8 totalled 20,135 480-lb bales, down from 22,338 in the previous session.

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