Dec 1 (Reuters) - ICE cotton rose on Friday buoyed by a streak of supportive export sales reports over the last few weeks, further supported by concerns of crop quality in top producer Texas. Cotton contracts for March settled up 0.47 cent, or 0.65 percent, at 73.28 cents per lb. It traded within a range of 72.66 and 73.41 cents a lb. The contract registered its sixth consecutive weekly gain and was up about 1.9 percent for the week.

Prices are up on "quality issues in Texas and as U.S. export sales for the year are a little bit further ahead from where it  usually is at this time of the year," said Beau Stephenson, Merchant at Omnicotton Inc. On Thursday, the U.S. Department of Agriculture reported net sales of 276,500 running bales for 2017-18, down 23 percent from the previous week and 14 percent from the prior four-week average, in its weekly export sales report.

Export sales for the natural fiber have totaled over 1.1 million bales in the last three weeks. Total futures market volume fell by 13,634 to 24,498 lots. Data showed total open interest gained 3,594 to 246,338 contracts in the previous session.

Certificated cotton stocks <CERT-COT-STX> deliverable as of Nov. 30 totaled 47,729 480-lb bales, down from 47,951 in the previous session. The dollar index was down 0.11 percent. The Thomson Reuters CoreCommodity CRB Index, which tracks 19 commodities, was up 0.80 percent – Reuters (Source: