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Cotton prices down 29%

With world cotton production booming, far outpacing demand, international cotton prices continued to deteriorate in June to new season lows, and the Cotlook A Index, a measure of international prices, dropped beneath 47 cents a pound, the International Cotton Advisory Committee (ICAC) reported.

At the low level, cotton prices are now 19 cents, or 29 percent lower than in December, when the Cotlook A index reached 66 cents per pound.

Driving the price erosion, world production is expected to increase by 6 percent, to 20.2 million tons next season, exceeding world consumption by about 300,000 tons.

"With supply anticipated to exceed demand in 2001/2002 and in 2002/03, prices are likely to remain depressed," said ICAC.

Supply/demand forecasts, said ICAC, suggest an average price of 54 cents for this cotton season, three cents beneath original projections.

World Cotton Supply and pricing Forecast
(in millions of tons, except for cotton prices)

1999/00 (actual) 2000/01 (proj.) 2001/02 (proj.)
Source: International Cotton Advisory Council (ICAC)
Production 18.71 19.02 20.21
Consumption 19.83 19.74 19.92
Exports 6.14 5.74 6.30
Ending Stocks 8.80 8.07 8.36
Cotlook A Price Index $0.53 $0.57 $0.54


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