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India: Cashew market shows slow signs of revival

The Indian Cashew market remained quiet last week. There was no change in price levels from that of the previous week.

Offers were made in the range of $3.80 to $3.90 for W240; $3.35 to $3.50 for W320; $3.25 to $3.35 for SW450 and SW320, Splits and Butts from $2.25 to $2.50, Pieces from $2.10 to $2.25 per lb, according to trade sources in Mumbai.

There were reports of sales by some Vietnam processors at lower levels but, in general, processors were not pushing to sell.

After a long period of inactivity, there was some movement in the Indian domestic market but only from a few consuming centres, Mr Pankaj N. Sampat, a Mumbai-based dealer told Business Line. “Prices inched up a bit, but there was no major movement in volume or prices,” he said.

Last fortnight saw revival of some interest in the raw cashew nut market. Good volumes of raw nuts were traded and prices moved up by about $100-$150 a tonne, depending on origin and quality. About 10,000 tonnes of Tanzanian raw cashew nuts have been traded for prompt shipment in the $1,325-$1,350 range.

Stocks of last year's crop in Ivory Coast and Guinea Bissau failed to generate buying interest despite reduced offers and the interest was in nuts available for immediate delivery for Feb/March processing. There are reports of some contracts for Benin at around $950 and Ivory Coast at around $850 C&F. “We feel that these forward sales are speculative and do not reflect what the actual prices will be,” Mr Pankaj said.

In the first two weeks of January, the US and European buyers bought some quantities in small volumes. Although coverage for April onwards is much lower than normal, they seem to be prepared to wait to see how things develop with the new crops in the first quarter before buying more. Both regions report double digit declines in sales, especially in the latter part of 2011. Despite lower prices, there is uncertainty about future sales, resulting from ongoing economic concerns, particularly in Europe.

Some buyers want to buy for April-September deliveries but they are looking for a discount from current levels. Reliable processors are not willing to sell at lower levels, unless raw nut prices come down substantially in the second quarter, they do not see much scope for kernel prices to ease from current levels.

Overall, there is nothing on the horizon to change expectations for the next few months, said Pankaj.

Source: www.thehindubusinessline.com 

Publication date: 2/9/2012


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