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Cotton Drops as Rain Seen Aiding India, U.S. Crops; Sugar Rises

Cotton futures fell for the first time in four sessions on speculation that wet weather in India and Texas will ease a decline in global output. Cocoa, coffee and orange juice also dropped. Sugar rose to a five-week high.

India, the world’s second-largest producer, received monsoon rains about a month earlier than normal and showers have been 48 percent above a 50-year average since they arrived on June 1, according to the India Meteorological Department. West Texas, the biggest growing region in the U.S., got as much as 0.5 inch (1.3 centimeters) of rain over the weekend and as much as 1.5 inches will fall in the next 48 hours, Donald Keeney, a meteorologist at Gaithersburg, Maryland-based MDA Information Systems Inc., said in an interview.

“There were some scattered showers in West Texas, and there are more forecast for this week,” John Flanagan, president of Flanagan Trading Corp. in Fuquay-Varina, North Carolina, said in a telephone interview. “The good monsoons in India” also will weigh on prices, he said.

Cotton for December delivery fell 0.5 percent to settle at 88.99 cents a pound at 2:51 p.m. on ICE Futures U.S. in New York. Prices rallied 5 percent in the previous three sessions, after the U.S. Department of Agriculture cut its forecast for output in domestic output.

The U.S. is the world’s largest exporter. In the 12 months starting Aug. 1, farmers may harvest 13.5 million bales, down from 14 million projected last month, the USDA said on June 12. Domestic output will drop 22 percent after a drought hurt crops. The agency also boosted its export estimate for the current season and trimmed its projection for stockpiles. A bale weighs 480 pounds, or 218 kilograms.

In India, monsoons account for about 70 percent of total annual rainfall, and more than 235 million farmers depend on the seasonal deluge for crop irrigation.

Cocoa, Coffee

Cocoa futures for delivery in September declined 1.7 percent to $2,215 a metric ton, the third straight drop. Arabica-coffee futures for September delivery slid 0.4 percent to $1.2325 a pound. Orange-juice futures for July delivery fell 0.8 percent to $1.458 cents a pound.

Raw-sugar futures for delivery in October rose 0.9 percent to 17.25 cents a pound, after reaching 17.3 cents, the highest for a most-active contract since May 13. The USDA announced a plan today to purchase domestic sugar to ease a glut. Prices still are down 12 percent this year.

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