By Keith Brown, DTN Contributing Cotton Analyst 

November 19, 2020
The cotton market sloughed off so-so export sales to finish its Thursday session with a tiny gain. Earlier Thursday morning, USDA issued sales and shipments numbers which were somewhat disappointing. In addition, the constant talk of rising COVID-19 infections in the U.S., as well as Europe, continued to undermine many financial and commodities markets.

The bottom line, there is increasing talk from governmental authorities about instituting new social restrictions and shutdowns for the balance of 2020. Technically, cotton remains in a steep bullish 7-month uptrend, but given the time of year, the market is seeking a harvest low. Traditionally, that low has been known to fall during Thanksgiving week, but certainly COVID-19 has momentarily wrecked all traditions. 

Nonetheless, into next week the crop should be at least two-thirds harvested, meaning from that time on the market will look toward some sort of winter demand market. To that end, Pakistan again was a big buyer of U.S. cotton in Thursday morning’s data. That country’s steady participation underscores the belief its crop was adversely hurt late in the growing season. 

As the market heads into Friday, March cotton is up 130 points on the week, up 193 on the month, and plus 91 points on the year. Today, December cotton closed at 63.20 cents, off .36, March settled at 71.67 cents, minus .16, and December 2021 cotton finished at 70.32 cents, down 1 point. Thursday’s estimated volume was 24,636 contracts. (Source: