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Orange Juice Climbs on Storm Threat; Cotton Surges; Sugar Slides

Aug. 21 (Bloomberg) -- Orange-juice futures rose to a one-month high as severe weather in the Caribbean may threaten groves in Florida, the world’s second-biggest citrus grower. Cotton and cocoa also advanced. Sugar and coffee slid.

An Atlantic tropical depression, the ninth of the season, may become a tropical storm later today, the National Hurricane Center said in an advisory on its website. The system may grow to hurricane strength within 48 hours, according to the agency.

“The way the steering currents are looking for early next week, this potential system could bear down on the state,” Jimmy Tintle, the chief executive officer at GreenKey Alternative Asset Services in Longwood, Florida, said in an e-mail.

Orange juice for November delivery rallied 4 percent to settle at $1.154 a pound at 2 p.m. on ICE Futures U.S. in New York. Earlier, the price reached $1.202, the highest for a most-active contract since July 19.

Two other Atlantic systems are being tracked by the hurricane center. A low pressure area over the far western Gulf of Mexico has a 30 percent chance of becoming a tropical system in the next two days, the NHC said. Another, 425 miles (684 kilometers) southwest of the Cape Verde islands, has a 60 percent probability of becoming tropical. Brazil is the world’s top orange grower. The hurricane season runs through November.

Cotton futures for December delivery gained 3.3 percent to 77.3 cents a pound on ICE, after touching 77.49 cents, the highest since May 22. Also in New York, cocoa futures for December delivery advanced 1 percent to $2,433 a metric ton.

Raw-sugar futures for October delivery fell 3.5 percent to 19.78 cents a pound in New York, after reaching 19.75 cents, the lowest since June 25.

The prospect of a supply “surplus is still weighing on the market,” Alex Oliveira, a trader at Newedge Group in New York, said in a telephone interview.

Arabica-coffee futures for December delivery slid 0.2 percent to $1.642 a pound on ICE.

To contact the reporter on this story: Marvin G. Perez in New York at mperez71@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Steve Stroth at sstroth@bloomberg.net

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