Rabobank revises coffee price forecasts due to Brazil weather fears

Rabobank have revised their price forecasts upwards after the recent fears about dry weather in Brazil have prompted speculators to build up their longest net positions for two and a half years, driving prices to their highest levels since late 2012. Rabobank is predicting that the Arabica price will hover around USc 140 per pound for the first quarter of this year, climbing further to USc 150 per pound in the second quarter. The bank forecasts that prices will retreat somewhat after predicted rains in the southeast of Brazil in the coming fortnight, however concerns about the damage already done to next year’s crop will keep prices up for the rest of the year. Brazil’s weather and slow sales in Vietnam have combined to push Robusta prices higher. However, Rabobank predicts that with just 40 per cent of Vietnam’s crop sold to date, coffee prices will ease over the next few months as more Robusta becomes available. The bank’s report also points to the likelihood of more Robusta being incorporated into blends to cover the shortage of Arabica, lifting demand and supporting prices over the longer term. As a result, Rabobank has revised its Robusta price forecast up to US$1,800 per tonne in the first quarter of the year and US$1,950 per tonne in the second quarter.

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