Coffee Futures Market News and Commentary
Sep arabica coffee (KCU19) on Friday closed down -1.70 (-1.80%), and Sep ICE robusta coffee (RMU19) closed down -20 (-1.51%). Coffee prices moved lower Friday with Sep arabica coffee falling to a 2-3/4 month low on robust supplies. Data from the Green Coffee Association Thursday showed U.S. July green coffee stockpiles rose +3.8% y/y to a 22-month high of 7.099 mln bags. Also undercutting coffee prices was weakness in the Brazilian real which fell -0.05% against the dollar Friday, modestly above Wednesday's 2-3/4 month low. A weaker real encourages export selling by Brazil's coffee producers. Coffee supplies are on the rise and continue to undercut coffee prices. The International Coffee Organization (ICO) on Aug 5 raised its global 2018/19 coffee surplus estimate by +26% to 3.92 mln bags from a July estimate of a 3.11 mln bag surplus. Also, the Columbian Coffee Growers Federation reported Aug 5 that July coffee production in Columbia, the world's second-biggest arabica producer, jumped +25% y/y to 1.3 mln bags. Strong coffee exports are a bearish factor for coffee prices. Marex Spectron on Monday said global July coffee exports climbed +10% to a record 11.6 mln bags. CeCafe reported last Friday that Brazil July green coffee exports rose +33% y/y to a record 2.83 mln bags. ICO on Aug 2 reported that global 2018/19 coffee exports during Oct-Jun rose +6.5% y/y to 97.3 mln bags. Recent dry weather in Brazil has been favorable for harvesting and negative for coffee prices after Safras & Mercado reported Aug 8 that Brazil's coffee harvest was 93% completed as of Aug 6, ahead of last year's 88% level and well ahead of the 5-year average of 84%. Robusta coffee has support from Maxar's forecast on Wednesday for dry conditions in Vietnam over the next week, which may curb robusta coffee yields. Also, Vietnam's National Center for Hydro-Meteorological Forecasting said last Wednesday that the Central Highlands, Vietnam's coffee-growing region, will receive 20%-40% less rain than average this month. In a bearish factor for robusta coffee, Vietnam's General Department of Vietnam Customs on July 28 reported that Vietnam July coffee exports rose +24.2% y/y to 165,000 MT, although cumulative Jan-Jul coffee exports fell by -7.6% y/y to 1.084 MMT. Vietnam is the world's largest producer of robusta beans. A potential bullish factor for robusta coffee is an extreme short position by hedge funds. Friday's weekly COT data showed that hedge funds boosted their net short positions by +1,605 contracts in the week ending Aug 13 to a record 45,419 contracts, the most since data began in 2011, which may fuel a short-covering rally. Big Picture Coffee Market Factors: World coffee production (Oct/Sep) in 2018/19 will climb +1.5% y/y to a record 167.747 mln bags with global consumption +2.0% y/y to 164.636 mln bags (ICO). The world coffee surplus in 2018/19 will fall to 3.11 mln bags from the mildly larger 2017/18 surplus of 3.836 mln bags (ICO). USDA projects global 2018/19 coffee production will climb +7.1% y/y to a record 171.166 mln bags and global 2018/19 coffee ending stocks will increase by +11.6% to a 3-year high of 32.812 mln bags.