COTTON: This month’s U.S. cotton forecasts for 2010/11 show lower production, higher domestic mill use, and lower ending stocks. The production estimate is reduced 215,000 bales from last month based on USDA’s final Cotton Ginnings report released March 25, 2011. Domestic mill use is raised 100,000 bales, reflecting recent activity. The export estimate is unchanged. Ending stocks are reduced 300,000 bales to a record low 1.6 million, the equivalent of 8 percent of total use. The forecast range for the marketing-year average price received by producers of 81 to 84 cents per pound is raised 1 cent on each end of the range. The world cotton forecasts for 2010/11 include lower production and higher consumption, resulting in a 2-percent reduction in ending stocks.
World production is reduced about 400,000 bales, based on decreases for the United States, the African Franc Zone, Turkey, and Pakistan, partially offset by an increase for Brazil. World consumption is raised, reflecting increases for Pakistan, the United States, and others, partially offset by a decrease for Brazil. Revisions to world trade include lower exports by Brazil and the African Franc Zone and lower imports by China and Pakistan. Forecast ending stocks of 41.6 million bales are 36 percent of world consumption, which is the smallest stocks-to-consumption ratio since 1993/94.