Raw sugar futures struggled to garner further support following a run above key technical resistance (14.50 USc/lb) last week, with the March18 contract settling the week 25 points in the red. As expected, the latest Commitment of Traders report saw specs reducing their positions by 42,000 lots (net short 68,500 lots). Interestingly, the Brazilian Real took a break back toward 3.33 raising the question of whether we would see more producers induced to hedge. Looking ahead, this week we see the latest UNICA report for 2H October. With very little new fundamental news, we expect the market to continue to cycle well-trod ground in the 13-15 USc/lb range.
The AUD ended slightly lower for the week, as a softer retail sales print gave back mid-week gains. The US FOMC left rates on hold as expected, maintaining they are on track for a December rate hike. There was little fanfare locally, as the market looked to local retail sales on Friday. This week the economic data calendar is highlighted by the RBA meeting and a handful of data on China (trade balances, CPI and PPI).