Cashew market continued to be quiet in Week 7. During the week, some business was done with USA & Europe at lower end of the range but volumes traded were small because most processors in India were not willing to sell at lower levels and Vietnam was closed. Indian market was very quiet with slow offtake and lower buying ideas.
Price range during the week was W240 from 3.85 to 4.05, W320 from 3.35 to 3.50, W450 from 3,05 to 3.15, SW320 around 3.10, SW360 around 2.90, Splits from 2.00 to 2.20 and Pieces from 1.45 to 1.55 FOB
There was not much activity in RCN market but undertone was steady. Business was done for Tanzania around 1325 and Mozambique around 950. It seems that 2012 crops in both origins will be smaller than 2011. There were reports of some trades for new crop West Africa RCN for March shipment in the range of 1050 to 1075 for Benin, around 1000 for Ghana and around 950 for IVC. Until movements start, all prices should be considered only as indications. With latest reports of Brazil crop being a third of normal, the pace of activity by Brazil will have an important effect on prices in West Africa.
Indian domestic RCN prices have opened at very high levels despite expectation of a good crop. In the next two weeks we should get an idea of price trend for Vietnam domestic RCN.. and also whether the reported financing problems are having any impact on intensity of buying by various categories of processors.
During March all attention will be on West Africa. If movements start early as expected and RCN prices soften, we could see more processors reducing prices to the lower end of the range to get some sales to continue buying. But if there are any delays or supply disruptions, it would take prices to the higher end of the range with reluctance to make any large sales until physical movements start. Delays and disruptions could also mean some periods of lower shelling & kernel shipments.
On the kernel side, the trend of short term buying continues and this means periodic bursts of activity with resultant dips and spikes in price within a narrow range. In a way, this is good as it reduces the chances of getting caught on the wrong foot. But it increases the chances of temporary “stock out” situations.
Slow movement and wide price differential for the scorched and brokens continues to be a “bug bear” for the shellers. If offtake does not improve in coming months, it will adversely impact their operations in terms of costs and cash flow.
With normal to good crops expected in all origins in the next 3-4 months, it is reasonable to expect steady market if everything remains on track. Situation needs to be watched closely till Apr/May for any developments on weather and logistics.
We would appreciate your comments and views, any special news or information… and your interest.
Pankaj N. Sampat
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