Market News

MARKET WATCH - Cameroon cocoa price drops on abundant supply

YAOUNDE, Cameroon--Exporters were paying less for cocoa beans at Cameroon's
main port of Douala this week, many exporters and traders there told Dow Newswires
Tuesday.


Ready-for-shipment cocoa beans sold for 1,074 Central African francs ($1.82), down
3.5% from XAF1,113 a week earlier, according to figures sent to Dow Jones Tuesday
by the cocoa and coffee board of Africa's third-largest cocoa producer.

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BLOOMBERG - The End of Cheap Chocolate? Cocoa Futures Surge Most on Record

Cocoa prices soared amid signs of tighter supplies in Ivory Coast, the world’s
top grower, raising prospects that chocolate costs will climb.


July futures jumped as much as 6.8 percent, the most ever for the contract.
Farmers in West Africa are already locking in more forward sales for next
year’s crop than traders were expecting, a sign that supplies from the current
harvest are beginning to ebb.

[...]

BLOOMBERG - Cocoa Jumps as Unrest Continues in Top Producer Ivory Coast

Cocoa rose, extending last week’s surge in prices, following a failure of talks
between army commanders and mutinous soldiers over the weekend in Ivory
Coast, the world’s biggest producer.


The beans jumped as much as 4.4 percent in London and also gained in New
York trading after Ivory Coast’s military was said to have given soldiers
an ultimatum on Sunday to drop their pay demands and end a revolt. Special
forces will take action against the soldiers should the talks fail, a person
familiar with the matter said.

[...]

BLOOMBERG - Cocoa Growers Will Work Together on Strategy to Fight Rout

Cocoa-growing countries will fight a price rout by banding together and coordinating production
strategies, the chairman of the International Cocoa Organization said.


The nations are also planning to promote local consumption of chocolate, the ICCO’s Luis
Valverde told reporters Monday in Abidjan, Ivory Coast’s commercial capital. He was speaking
after an emergency meeting held by members of the group after a dramatic tumble for prices.

[...]

BLOOMBERG - It’s Time to Load Up on Chocolates Before Cocoa Rebounds

Chocolate addicts, it’s probably a good time to start stocking up. The treats
may not be this cheap much longer.


Cocoa’s 41 percent slump over the last 12 months makes it the worst
performer among 34 commodities tracked by Bloomberg. Prices tumbled as
output increased in Ivory Coast, the world’s top grower, and the decline has
pushed down retail prices for chocolates.

[...]

REUTERS - Ivory Coast cocoa quality suffers as merchants blend beans

ABIDJAN (Reuters) - Cocoa exporters and grinders in top producer Ivory Coast are rejecting
large volumes of beans because of poor quality as farmers seek to blend leftover main-crop
cocoa into new mid-crop arrivals, exporters and merchants said on Thursday.


A wave of defaults by exporters and higher than expected production left a glut of beans
rotting in trucks at ports and in warehouses this year as farmers struggled to find buyers for
what is the country's leading export product.

[...]

REUTERS - Heavy rains threaten Ivory Coast cocoa mid-crop

ABIDJAN, April 18 (Reuters) - Heavy rain in several of Ivory Coast's main cocoa growing
regions last week has raised fears of lower production during the April-September mid-crop
due to falling pods and disease, farmers said on Tuesday.


The mid-crop marketing season in Ivory Coast, the world's top producer, opened on April 1
with a guaranteed farmgate price of 700 CFA francs ($1.13) per kilogramme, which the
government slashed by 36 percent last month.

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BLOOMBERG - Ivory Coast Plays Blame Game for Cocoa Crisis in Top Producer

Ivory Coast’s cocoa regulator pointed to speculators and prospects for a glut as
the reason for a slump in futures that forced the nation to cut the price it pays
farmers. There was something it didn’t blame: Itself.


Le Conseil du Cafe-Cacao also said a volatile pound and defaults by local
exporters contributed to a plunge in international futures. But there’s
frustration that the CCC’s slow response to the crisis gave speculators more
reason to short prices, on expectations that beans would have to be resold at a
time the market was forecast to return to surplus.

[...]

BLOOMBERG - Valentine’s Chocolate Gets Cheaper as Cocoa Supply Swells

Buying your sweetheart a box of Valentine’s Day chocolates could be cheaper
this year thanks to booming cocoa supplies.


Growers are collecting bigger harvests in Latin America and in West Africa,
which accounts for about 70 percent of global production. The output gains
have pushed cocoa futures to the lowest since 2008, cutting costs for
companies including Mondelez International Inc., the maker of Cadbury
chocolates and Oreo cookies.

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BLOOMBERG - Cocoa Rout Spurs Concern Some Farmers Will Return to Cocaine

The worst cocoa price rout in more than 17 years is raising concern that
farmers in South America may quit growing the raw material used in
chocolate, and shift to alternative crops such as cocaine, industry groups said.

[...]

BLOOMBERG - Plunging Cocoa Prices Mean You Can Splurge on Christmas Chocolate

Cocoa prices are spiraling lower, making chocolate cheaper just in time to stuff
those Christmas stockings even more full of treats.


Futures in New York have tumbled to a three-year low as rains improve crops
in West Africa, which grows more than two-thirds of the world’s cocoa each
season. The output gains mean the market is shifting from a production deficit
to the biggest surplus in six years, according to Citigroup Inc.

[...]

BLOOMBERG - Cocoa Prices Reach Highest in 42 Months as Ebola Spreads

Forecasts for the Ebola disease to spread faster in West Africa than earlier estimates are
sending cocoa prices higher as concerns mount that shipments from Ivory Coast, the
world’s top producer, may be disrupted.

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THE WALL STREET JOURNAL - Cocoa Prices Surge on Ebola Fears

The deadly Ebola virus spreading through West Africa is sparking fears in the market
that supplies of cocoa, one of the region's top exports, could be disrupted.

[...]

BLOOMBERG - Indian Sugar Exports Jumping as Brazil Drought Fuels Rally

Sugar shipments from India, the world’s second-largest producer, are poised to climb as the biggest
monthly gain in prices since 2011 and a state subsidy help mills compete with supplies from Brazil and
Thailand.

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BLOOMBERG - Sugar Futures Enter Bull Market on Parched Brazil Crop

Sugar futures entered a bull market, climbing more than 20 percent from a January low, as dry
weather threatens crop yields in Brazil, the world’s top producer and exporter.


On ICE Futures U.S. in New York, raw sugar for May delivery rose 2.3 percent to settle at 18.07
cents a pound at 1:06 p.m. The price climbed 23 percent from the 43-month closing low of 14.74
cents on Jan. 29. Brazil is also the biggest grower and shipper of coffee, which surged into a bull
market last month.

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