Cotton for May delivery jumped by the exchange limit of 7 cents, or 3.4 percent, to settle at an all-time high of $2.127 a pound at 2:47 p.m. on ICE Futures U.S. in New York. The price rose for the sixth straight session, the longest rally since Nov. 5.
Cotton futures surged to a record on signs that global demand from textile mills will continue to outpace supplies.
Output in China, the world’s biggest consumer, fell 6.3 percent last year, the National Bureau of Statistics said this week. U.S. sales surged 56 percent to 403,341 bales in the week ended Feb. 24 from a week earlier, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said yesterday. Prices have more than doubled in the past year.
“It’s a worldwide scramble,” said John Flanagan, the president of Flanagan Trading Corp. in Fuquay-Varina, North Carolina. “The last holdouts realized there was no way out other than just buying, trying to find cotton to keep their mills running.”