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Cotton Falls Most in Two Months on Budget Impasse; Sugar Drops

Cotton fell the most in two months on concern that an impasse in U.S. budget talks will slow the economy, reducing demand for the fiber. Orange juice, coffee sugar and cocoa also dropped.

Congressional leaders plan to meet with President Barack Obama today. The president is set to propose a scaled-back package at the meeting to avert tax and spending changes known as the fiscal cliff that could trigger a recession in 2013, a Democratic aide with knowledge of the talks said. House Republicans said they will convene on Dec. 30. Cotton has slumped 19 percent this year as global inventories swelled.

“Fiscal cliff jitters are weighing on the market,” Keith Brown, the president of Keith Brown & Co., a broker in Moultrie, Georgia, said in a telephone interview.

Cotton for March delivery declined 1.8 percent to settle at 74.66 cents a pound at 2:30 p.m. on ICE Futures U.S. in New York, the biggest loss for a most-active contract since Oct. 30. The fiber slumped 2 percent this week, the most since Nov. 2.

“Uncertainty on Wall Street has an impact on all commodities,” Sid Love, the president of Joe Kropf & Sid Love Consulting in Overland Park, Kansas, said in an e-mail.

Orange-juice futures for March delivery lost 4 percent to $1.265 a pound on ICE, the biggest decline for a most-active contract since Sept. 24. The commodity was down 5.8 percent for the week.

Arabica-coffee futures for March delivery slid 0.7 percent to $1.4685 a pound in New York. The price gained 0.2 percent this week.

Cocoa futures for March delivery fell 0.3 percent to $2,249 a metric ton on ICE. The commodity lost 2.7 percent for the week, the second straight decline.

Raw-sugar futures for March delivery dropped 0.2 percent to 19.42 cents a pound in New York. The sweetener was up 0.9 percent for the week.

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