Cocoa Declines on Forecast for Rain in West Africa; Sugar Slides

Cocoa declined for a second day in New York and London as Ivory Coast and Ghana, the world’s biggest producers, are forecast to get the most rain since June this weekend. Sugar fell.

Ivory Coast and Ghana may get as much as 1.5 inches (3.8 centimeters) of rain this weekend, helping to ease dryness in both countries, David Streit, an agricultural meteorologist at Commodity Weather Group Inc., in Bethesda, Maryland, said by phone yesterday. Dry weather threatens to cut production in the region.

“Even if the rains may not be sufficient, the forecasts have triggered selling,” Jerome Jourquin, head of agricultural derivatives at Aurel BGC in Paris, said by e-mail today. “Traders have started to sell the market and speculators that are long the market are taking profit after the recent gains.”

Cocoa for delivery in December declined 0.4 percent to $2,468 a metric ton by 7:22 a.m. in New York on ICE Futures U.S. Cocoa for delivery in the same month slid 0.4 percent to 1,641 pounds ($2,544) a ton in London.

The bean gained 10 percent in New York and 14 percent in London this year on speculation the next crop will be delayed and dry weather would reduce production. Farmers in Ghana will gather 800,000 tons in 2013-14, down from 900,000 tons in the current season, estimates Lome, Togo-based Ecobank.

“West African dry weather risks are still underpinning futures,” Kona Haque, an analyst at Macquarie Group Ltd. in London, said in a report e-mailed today. “Rainfall forecasts for the next two weeks are still too scanty in our view, and insufficient to replenish depleted soil moisture levels.”

Raw sugar for delivery in October declined 0.2 percent to 16.33 cents a pound on ICE. White sugar for delivery in the same month fell 0.5 percent to $474.30 a ton on NYSE Liffe.

Rabobank International lowered its forecast for raw sugar for the third-quarter by 0.4 cent a pound to 16.6 cents a pound because of weakening emerging market currencies, more producer selling and higher sugar prices over ethanol in Brazil, the bank said in a report today.

Arabica coffee for delivery in December was unchanged at $1.1765 a pound in New York. Robusta coffee for November delivery rose 0.3 percent to $1,769 a ton in London.

To contact the reporter on this story: Alex Pashley in London at apashley@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Claudia Carpenter at ccarpenter2@bloomberg.net

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