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SOFTS-NY cocoa climbs to 11-week high, arabica eases

LONDON, Nov 20 (Reuters) - New York cocoa futures climbed to an 11-week high on Friday, buoyed by low stocks and a recent large front-month premium, while arabica coffee prices eased but remained just below the prior session’s two-month peak.

COCOA

* March New York cocoa was up $28, or 1.05%, at $2,693 a tonne at 1200 GMT after rising to a peak of $2,699 on Wednesday, the highest since early September.

* Dealers said certified stocks remained low at 198,117 60-kg bags, as of Nov. 19, compared with 310,446 bags at the same time a year earlier. The decline reflects a drawdown in stocks of Ivorian Group A cocoa to 94,287 bags from 239,118 bags.

* The fall in stocks has helped to spark huge premiums for the December contract in recent days and also provided support for 2021 contracts.

* March London cocoa was up 22 pounds, or 1.2%, at 1,813 pounds a tonne after peaking at 1,817, the highest since late September.

* Ghana’s cocoa regulator threatened on Thursday to suspend the sustainability schemes used by major cocoa and chocolate companies to assure consumers that the beans they use are sustainably and ethically sourced.

COFFEE

* March arabica coffee fell 0.15 cents, or 0.1%, to $1.2305 per lb, consolidating just below the prior session’s two-month high of $1.2440.

* Dealers awaited further clarity on the extent of damage from an unprecedented 2020 hurricane season in Central America with challenges related to the destruction of infrastructure as well as the loss of coffee.

* January robusta coffee fell $3, or 0.2%, to $1,388 a tonne.

SUGAR

* March raw sugar was up 0.01 cent, or 0.1%, at 15.29 cents per lb. The front month had peaked at 15.66 cents on Tuesday, its highest since mid-February.

* March white sugar was up $2.40, or 0.6%, at $417.10 a tonne. (Reporting by Nigel Hunt; editing by David Evans)

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