The first U.S. cotton projections for 2014/15 include larger production, lower offtake, and higher ending stocks compared with 2013/14. Production is forecast at 14.5 million bales, based on the March Prospective Plantings report and the most recent 2-year regional average abandonment and yields.
The U.S. abandonment rate is projected at 24 percent due to persistent severe drought in the Southwest. Domestic mill use is forecast at 3.7 million bales, 100,000 bales above 2013/14.
Exports are projected at 9.7 million bales, down 7 percent, due to lower anticipated world import demand. Ending stocks are raised to 3.9 million bales or 29 percent of total use, which is about equal to the previous 10-year average. The forecast range for the marketing year average price received by producers is 63.0 to 83.0 cents per pound, compared with 77.5 cents estimated for 2013/14.
The initial 2014/15 world cotton projections show world ending stocks of nearly 102 million bales, which would be the fourth consecutive record. World production is projected 1.4 percent lower than 2013/14 at 115.5 million bales, as reductions, mainly for China, Australia, and India, are partially offset by increases for the United States, Brazil, and Turkey.
World consumption is expected to rise more than 2 percent, due to projected growth in world GDP and expected reductions in China’s price support levels. China’s beginning stocks are expected to reach nearly 60 million bales, more than 60 percent of total world stocks. China’s imports are projected to fall about one-third in 2014/15, as the government is likely to restrict imports in favor of consumption of domestic cotton. China accounts for virtually all of the anticipated 10-percent reduction in world trade. With China’s ending stocks expected to grow slightly, world stocks outside of China would rise about 7 percent.
For 2013/14, the final U.S. crop production estimate of 12.9 million bales is about unchanged from last month. China’s imports and India’s exports are raised, but U.S. exports are reduced 300,000 bales due to the recent fall-off in sales. U.S. ending stocks are raised to 2.8 million bales.
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