(Reuters) - ICE cotton futures edged up on Wednesday, hovering near more than two-month highs hit last week on concerns over crop damage in top producer India.
Cotton contracts for March CTH8 settled up 0.21 cent, or 0.29 percent, at 72.72 cents per lb., and traded in a range of 72.44 and 73.27 cents a lb.
“The bollworm problem in India is making the market bid today,” a New York-based trader said.
India is likely to export nearly one-fifth less cotton than previously estimated as pink bollworms are set to eat into the south Asian country’s output which was expected to hit a record, industry officials told Reuters in late November.
“Cotton has a pretty substantial long position already ... there really are some fundamentals behind the market that continue to keep cotton with a bid,” the trader noted.
Meanwhile, the market awaited export sales data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture due on Thursday.
Total futures market volume fell by 9,389 to 18,496 lots. Total open interest gained 473 to 249,201 contracts in the previous session, data showed.
Certificated cotton stocks CERT-COT-STX deliverable as of Dec. 5 totalled 47,628 480-lb bales, unchanged from the previous session.
The dollar index .DXY was up 0.23 percent. The Thomson Reuters CoreCommodity CRB Index .TRJCRB, which tracks 19 commodities, was down 1.46 percent.
Reporting by Nithin Prasad in Bengaluru; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe