August 5, 2013 / 9:24 AM / 4 years ago

India sugar steady as festive season seen improving demand

MUMBAI, Aug 5 (Reuters) - Indian sugar futures were steady at mid-session on Monday, after falling to their lowest in a fortnight earlier in the day, as lower-level buying aided by hopes of higher demand in the festive season offset a forecast of surplus output for a fourth straight year.

* At 0906 GMT, the key August contract on the National Commodity and Derivatives Exchange was unchanged at 2,999 rupees ($49.24) per 100 kg, after falling to 2,990 rupees, the lowest level since July 19.

* “Sugar has fallen a lot in last six months. Right now sugar is trading near its production cost and it should induce higher buying during the festival season,” said Nalini Rao, an analyst at India Infoline Ltd.

* Spot sugar rose by 10 rupees to 3,049 rupees per 100 kg at the Kolhapur market in Maharashtra state.

* India is likely to produce 23.7 million tonnes of sugar in the 2013/14 marketing year beginning October, down 5.2 percent from a year earlier, but higher than the local demand of around 23 million tonnes.

* Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh, the top two sugar producers in India, received more rainfall than normal since the beginning of the monsoon on June 1, weather department data showed, boosting prospects of higher production.

$1 = 60.9100 Indian rupees Reporting by Rajendra Jadhav; Editing by Sunil Nair

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