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Markets

Funds raise bullish bet in raw sugar to nearly 200,000 contracts

  • The funds added 20,598 contracts to their net long bet that now totals 193,823 contracts, the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission said.
  • Funds have not lost their appetite in commodities for now, and unless you can flush them, it will be harder to pressure sugar down.
17 Oct 2020

NEW YORK: Hedge funds and money managers increased their bullish bets on ICE raw sugar futures in the week to Oct. 13 to above nearly 200,000 contracts, the highest speculators' net long position in the sweetener in five years, data released on Friday showed.

The funds added 20,598 contracts to their net long bet that now totals 193,823 contracts, the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) said, in a week when sugar prices touched the highest since February.

"Funds have not lost their appetite in commodities for now, and unless you can flush them, it will be harder to pressure sugar down," said a New York-based sugar broker.

The sugar market remains supported by worries regarding future supply as some key producing countries such as Thailand, Russia and the European Union are expected to produce less and there is concern about the impact of a long dry spell in top producer Brazil.

"Their (funds) positive attitude is not just in sugar. They are currently long of virtually all agricultural contracts suggesting they see better possible returns than in other asset classes which are more influenced by the pandemic," said another futures broker.

The CFTC data showed that speculators kept their position in arabica coffee futures basically unchanged, holding a long position of 20,303 contracts.

They increased their net long position in cotton futures in the week to Oct. 13 by 9,467 contracts to 55,978 contracts.

They cut their net long position in cocoa futures by 7,471 contracts to 7,337 contracts.