Cocoa futures prices were sharply higher Wednesday on the Coffee, Sugar & Cocoa Exchange in New York as the market tried to trace rumors of difficulties in shipping cocoa from the Ivory Coast.
Deirdre Macleod, a cocoa analyst in New York with Prudential-Bache Securities Inc., said a rally on the London market encouraged buyers in the market in New York, which triggered additional buying by traders who follow technical factors such as trends on price charts.
She said the rumors, which were unconfirmed, gave further impetus to the upward move.
Cocoa settled $38 to $66 higher with the contract for delivery in July at $2,071 a metric ton.
Wheat and corn futures prices were lower and soybeans were mixed in light trading on the Chicago Board of Trade.
Wheat prices were under pressure from continuing progress in the harvest of winter wheat, said Walter Spilka, a grain analyst in New York with Smith Barney, Harris Upham & Co. Spilka said the harvest has reached into the heaviest production areas of the nation.