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March Coffee Market Report

Good day. Welcome to DRWakefield’s Weekly Coffee Market Report!

This report touches upon the Arabica and Robusta coffee futures market, currency pairings and news from origin. See our Market Report Terms page for clarity on any terminology in the coffee market report below.

Live Market Data

 


Coffee Market Report 02/04/2024

This report covers the period from Monday 25th March to Friday 29th March and was written by Jack Ravenscroft. 

Coffee Market

The C market had a volatile week following relative stability last week.  

The week opened at 185.15 c/lb and followed an upward trend through to Wednesday, closing on 27/03 at 190.65 c/lb. Thursday saw a brief correction, before the market regained bullish momentum closing on Good Friday at 188.85 c/lb.  The May 24’ terminal is still the most liquid, with a weekly range of almost 10 c/lb. 

Fundamentals remain steady, weather forecasts in Brazil are positive, and certified stocks continue to recover. Given the supply problems, recent strong rises in the robusta market seem to continue to play an important role in supporting Arabica levels.  

The Robusta market continued to show strength. On Monday 25/03, Robusta futures broke the $3,400 threshold and closed at a new all-time high for the benchmark contract for May delivery of $3,417. The contract didn’t manage to break the intraday record high of $3,460, set on March 7. 

Vietnam reported that exports in the 23/24 cycle will be 20% lower, increasing concern about the product’s supply on the market.  

COT & certified stocks

↑ Arabica certified stocks: 595,209 bags (an increase of 27,112) 

Origin

Vietnam’s production is at its lowest level for the last four years, a decline attributed to climate change, lack of investment, and the shift to alternative crops. In addition, weather conditions are not encouraging. There are still concerns over possible water shortage for irrigation, which may hurt the output of the next season. 

Brazil rains have been positive for both arabica and robusta crops. According to Cepea researchers, the rainfall should help to fill the beans of later coffee plantations and contribute to the last fertilizations of the harvest. The pace of business remains slow in the national spot. However, with the harvest approaching, more lots should be sold off as producers look for cash to pay for the upcoming harvest. 

Currency & Macro Outlook

The US dollar fluctuated in the second half of the week, initially faltering despite a stronger-than-expected domestic GDP reading, before rallying after the core PCE price index reported that US inflation remained sticky in February. The extended Easter weekend in Europe will leave the GBP and Euro vulnerable to the US dollar’s advances at the start of next week.  

The pound ticked higher on Thursday, with GBP investors unfazed by the latest UK GDP figures, despite them confirming the country slipped into a recession at the end of 2023. Meanwhile, the Euro was pressured on Thursday after a shock slump in German retail sales stoked fears that the Eurozone’s largest economy will have slipped into a recession in the first quarter of 2024.  


Coffee Market Report 25/03/2024

This report covers the period from Monday 18th March to Friday 22nd March and was written by James Duncan.

Coffee Market

The C market opened on 18th March at 182.75 c/lb, briefly rallying to 186.15 c/lb before closing out lower at 181.75 c/lb. The first half of the week followed the bearish trend, briefly dipping below 180 c/lb on Tuesday before the bull was back in town. Hitting a high for the week at 188.40 c/lb on Thursday, we closed out the week higher than we started at 184.85 c/lb. Most of the upwards momentum was caused by speculative short covering. With little fundamental news to drive the market this week, Friday’s drop was mostly driven by specs selling and the dollar firming. 

In Robusta news, the outlook remains high. We have been on a bullish run all week, hitting a high on Friday of 3428 before closing out at 3358. The range has increased every day this week as we continue to hit new highs. It remains to be seen if we hit the next resistance of 3460, the brief high of three weeks ago—the upper range of the Bollinger Band currently. 

COT & certified stocks

↓ Non-commercials decreased their net long position by 5,560 to 28,469. 

Commercials decreased their net short position by 7,851 to 80,870. 

Arabica pending grading: 130,042 (-24,588) 

Origin

Peru’s harvest output is expected to be lower than last year but not currently projected to be by much. Harvesting usually begins in April, peaking in June/July. Coffee exporters in Brazil have been holding back coffee for better offers, leading to slow sales in the last few weeks. Both the market and physical sales are expected to slow this week in the lead up to Easter, observed as a public holiday in buying and producing countries alike. 

Currency & Macro Outlook

Last week was a tale of two currencies—the USD continued to strengthen as investors eyed the likelihood of the Federal Reserve delivering two rather than the three rate cuts promised; and GBP declined in the wake of the Bank of England’s announcement to hold interest rates steady, with predictions of a rate cut in June. Elsewhere, the German business climate indicator beat forecasts, but this failed to materialise in real change for the EUR.  


Coffee Market Report 18/03/2024

This report covers the period from Monday 11th March to Friday 15th March and was written by Hannah Wakefield.

Coffee Market

The NY C market opened at 185 c/lb on Monday, 11th March; the daily range was fairly minimal, between 182.25 c/lb and 185.95 c/lb, and the market closed as it opened, at exactly 185 c/lb. Tuesday saw the weekly high of 187.90 c/lb, but still remained within a cautious range. The tide turned more dramatically on Wednesday, 13th March, with a daily range of 5.70 c/lb and the market closing at 182.65 c/lb, 3.25 c/lb below open. The downward pressure came mostly from speculative selling, plus another increase in certified stocks as they reached highs not seen since October, encouraging the bearish sentiment. Thursday and Friday were steadier days with more sideways trading, closing the week out at 182.95 c/lb. Overall, it was a fairly uneventful week for the C market.

The London Robusta market remains as high as it has been this week. Opening on Monday 11th March at 3296 $/mt and closing on Friday 15th March at 3308 $/mt. It traded steadily throughout the week with no new fundamental news to shift the market significantly. The outlook for Robusta remains high.

COT & certified stocks

↓ Non-commercials decreased their net long by 197 lots to total 54,249 net long.

↑ Arabica Certified Stocks level: 488,678 bags (increase of 63,926 bags)

↓ Arabica pending grading: 154,630 171,557 bags (decreased by 16,927 bags)

Origin

CeCafe released data on Brazil’s coffee exports for February, showing an increase of 57% year on year. Arabica exports totalled 2.81 million bags, and Robusta hit 570,361 bags, the highest volume of coffee that has ever been exported from Brazil in the month of February. However, the weather has turned dry in Brazil, which means we must keep an eye on it as it may impact the final stages of development of the new Arabica crop. Although dry weather is good news for the end of this Robusta harvest. Due to continued lack of supply of Vietnamese and Indonesian Robusta, Brazilian Robusta has been in unusually high demand, the export figures from 2024 so far show that Brazil has exported a staggering 6 times more Robusta in January and February than the same period in 2023.

On the other side of the world, Uganda’s export figures for February have fallen 9.36% year on year. The Robusta exports were slightly lower, 0.52%, but the Arabica exports were a significant 40.83% lower than last year. This drop in volume is due to a smaller crop, particularly in the Mount Elgon region. However, it’s not all bad news as the value of February exports increased by 25.06% year on year! Largely due to the sustained high coffee prices, particularly the historically high Robusta price.

Currency & Macro Outlook

The US Dollar traded steadily, strengthening a little. The Fed is expected to leave interest rates unchanged. Retail sales in the US rose by 0.6% in February, which was less than expected and suggests a slowdown in consumer spending of the average American. This is likely due to rising inflation and the high cost of borrowing money.

ECB policymaker Yannis Stournaras called for the ECB to start cutting interest rates soon, and suggested that the bank should consider cutting rates twice before summer.

The Bank of England is expected to hold its substantial rate of 5.25%. Andrew Bailey, the governor of the BoE is in no hurry to cut rates as uncertainty remains over the labour market and unemployment levels. A Reuter’s poll suggests that BoE will begin cutting rates in q3 of this year, although 40% of economists disagree and think we will see cuts to the interest rate before then.


Coffee Market Report 11/03/2024

This report covers the period from Monday 4th March to Friday 8th March and was written by Mantvydas Trainavicius.

New York Coffee Market

Monday 4th of March 2024 NYC market (May2024 Terminal month) opened at 183.50 usc/lb with a bullish intention and closed for the day at 186.90 usc/lb with decent trading volume. Although the following two days consisted mainly of sideways movement, Thursday brought bullish action to the market and continued with the upward trajectory closing at 192.20 usc/lb. This was the biggest daily range of the week. As the bulls grew weaker and the market met with resistance, Friday resulted in a sell off and closed at 185.20 usc/lb, a little higher to the weekly open. The range for the week was 182.70 – 194.75 usc/lb.

The London robusta market has been looking up and keeps increasing to record highs with the highest for the week on Thursday 7th of March 2024 at 3460 usd/mt (May 2024 Terminal month), closing the gap between arabica and robusta prices. Friday 8th of March, managed to come back a bit and closed the week at 3297 usd/mt (May 2024 Terminal month). With continuous Robusta shortages and supply chain issues in the Red Sea, Arabicas share of the market has been increasing.

COT & certified stocks

↑ Non-commercials increased their net long by 516 bags to total 32,642 bags net long.

↑ Arabica Certified Stocks level: 424,752 bags (increase of 13,875 bags)

↑ Arabica pending grading: 171,557 bags (increased by 9,277 bags)

Origin

After Guatemala’s coffee exports fell in the 2022-2023 coffee year below the 3 million 60-kg mark, exports slowed down in the 2023-2024 year, according to figures from Guatemala’s coffee association Anacafe.

Colombia, the world’s third-largest producer, produced 961,000 bags (60kg) in February, down from 1.205 million in the same period last year, as per the coffee grower’s federation.

Vietnam’s General Statistics Office has forecast that the country’s coffee exports for December will total 3.167 million bags, representing a 4.5% decline from the same month last year.

Data from CECAFE on Brazil’s February exports will be released next week. During the month, Arabica futures prices declined 6.45 cents or 3.38%. A firm dollar, the increase of cert stocks and the expectative of a greater Brazilian output in 2024 were the main bearish factors affecting the market.

Vietnam and Indonesia have increased coffee imports from Brazil to meet demand in their home markets while continuing to export the robusta coffee variety they grow. According to Cecafé, imports from Brazil to Indonesia more than doubled last year; in the 12 months ending in January, Brazil imports to Vietnam jumped more than sixfold. Weather also impacted coffee production in Vietnam and Indonesia as El Niño reduced rainfall in Southeast Asia.

Currency & Macro Outlook

The S&P Global composite Purchasing Managers Index published on 5th of March 2024 stated that the UK services and manufacturing sector rose from 52.9 to 53 month-on-month in February, suggesting the economy is out of a short recession but inflation pressures will keep the Bank of England on alert.

The UK finance minister, Jeremy Hunt adopted a major policy of the opposition Labour Party to abolish the long-contentious “non-dom” status that allows the wealthy, often foreign residents to avoid tax on overseas income.

The US Federal Reserve Chair, Jerome Powell, said on the 6th of March 2024 that interest rate cuts are still likely to happen in upcoming months as long as there is evidence of decreasing inflation.

The European Central Bank (ECB) decided to keep the three key ECB interest rates unchanged at the meeting on 7th of March 2024. The interest rate on the main refinancing operations and the interest rates on the marginal lending facility and the deposit facility will remain unchanged at 4.50%, 4.75% and 4.00% respectively.