COTTON: This month’s 2017/18 U.S. cotton forecasts include slightly lower production and ending stocks. Production is reduced 177,000 bales due to small declines in regions outside the Delta. Ending stocks are reduced 100,000 bales, while domestic mill use and exports are unchanged. The forecast for the marketing year average price received by producers is raised 3 cents per pound, to a midpoint of 69 cents.
Offsetting changes in foreign production and consumption characterize the global 2017/18 cotton forecasts this month. Global production is raised 1.0 million bales as a 1.4-millionbale increase for China is only partly offset by small decreases in India, the United States, and Australia. Global consumption is raised 1.2 million bales largely due to a 1.0-million-bale increase for China. World consumption is forecast to grow at a 5.2 percent annual rate in 2017/18, more than double its long-run level. Projected world ending stocks are changed slightly this month, down 200,000 bales from December, but at 87.8 million bales are still forecast marginally higher than the year before.