NEW YORK: ICE cotton futures fell on Thursday on a weekly federal export report that showed large cancellations, which outweighed sales, raising concerns over demand for the natural fibre.

Cotton contracts for July fell 0.29 cent, or 0.48%, to 60.19 cents per lb. as of 1:48 pm EDT (1748 GMT). It traded within a range of 59.66 and 60.43 cents a lb.

The export report was disappointing with large old crop cancellations and shipments, which were below the average needed to meet the United States Department of Agriculture's (USDA) export target, said John Bondurant, a trader in Memphis, Tennessee.

“We are going to come up quite a bit short of that (export target), maybe a half million to three-quarters of a million bales short."

In its weekly export sales report, the USDA showed net sales reductions of 10,100 running bales (RB) for the 2019/2020 marketing year for the period ending May 28.

Exports were 237,900 RB, 16% below the prior 4-week average.

Further souring sentiment were lingering fears Beijing could stall state purchases of US cotton, as tensions escalate between the top-buyer and US, the top-exporter.

But prices scaled an over two-month peak on Monday and has held above 60 cents per lb so far this week.

“There is not a lot of activity in either direction. There hasn't been a ton of pressure to sell or to buy, so the market is just staying comfortable and trading sideways," said Bailey Thomen, cotton risk management associate with INTL FCStone.

Dry weather in the top cotton producing state Texas also kept a floor on prices and has led to gains of about 4.6% from Friday's close.

Total futures market volume fell by 4,136 to 20,031 lots. Data showed total open interest gained 179 to 186,101 contracts in the previous session.-Reuters

New York cotton

NEW YORK: The following were the fluctuations observed during the day:

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Current Session Prior Day

Open High Low Last Time Set Chg Vol Set

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Jul'20 60.17 60.43 59.66 60.17 12:46 – -0.31 10639 60.48

June 04

Oct'20 59.61 59.66 59.61 59.66 11:52 – -0.07 3 59.73

June 04

Dec'20 59.35 59.78 59.02 59.60 12:46 – -0.13 10773 59.73

June 04

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Copyright Reuters, 2020