Robusta Coffee Advances on Stockpiles, Vietnam Crop; Cocoa Gains

Robusta coffee gained for a second day in London on speculation stockpiles will continue to fall just as production in Vietnam, the world’s largest producer of the variety, may be smaller than anticipated. Cocoa rose.

Vietnam will produce 1.393 million metric tons of coffee in the 2012-13 season that started Oct. 1, according to Amsterdam- based trader Nedcoffee BV. That’s down from a previous estimate of 1.48 million tons and from 1.62 million tons a year earlier, the trader, which also has offices in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, said in a report on Jan. 16. Robusta coffee stockpiles have fallen 75 percent since reaching an all-time high in July 2011.

“Robusta certified stocks will continue to decrease,” Thijs Pons, an ABN Amro Bank NV analyst, said in a report e- mailed today. “The global consumption balance between arabica and robusta has seen a shift towards the cheaper robusta.”

Robusta coffee for March delivery was up 0.5 percent to $1,971 a ton by 10:23 a.m. on NYSE Liffe in London. The price touched $1,985 a ton, the highest since Jan. 18, in earlier trade. Arabica coffee for March delivery was 0.3 percent higher at $1.508 a pound on ICE Futures U.S. in New York.

Robusta coffee stockpiles with a valid grading certificate in warehouses monitored by NYSE Liffe were 104,860 metric tons on Jan. 7, down 1.6 percent from two weeks earlier. The exchange will update inventory figures later today. Stockpiles were at an all-time high of 417,420 a ton in July 2011.

Cocoa for March delivery was up 0.1 percent at 1,449 pounds ($2,294) a ton on NYSE Liffe. Cocoa for March delivery gained 0.2 percent to $2,220 a ton on ICE.

White, or refined, sugar for March delivery fell 0.8 percent to $485.90 a ton in London. Raw sugar for March delivery was 0.2 percent down at 18.46 cents a pound in New York, after rising to as much as 18.60 cents a pound yesterday.

Sugar price strength yesterday may have been due to the potential for more cane to be allocated to ethanol production next season in Brazil, the world’s largest producer, Deutsche Bank AG said in an e-mailed report. An increase in arrears by millers in India and reduced output in Thailand may also have helped.

To contact the reporter on this story: Isis Almeida in London at Ialmeida3@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Claudia Carpenter at Ccarpenter2@bloomberg.net.

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