Morning Brief – Cocoa

Humphrey Percy
Chairman and Founder
Mon 4 Mar 2024


The world’s cocoa crop available for consumption has shrunk by 11% in the past year as a result of a combination of poor weather and supply disruption. The move in the NY ICE Cocoa contract is a clear reflection of what that means in real world terms: in March 2023 Cocoa stood at $2586 and today it stands at $6769. The way it is going, chocolate having been if not a staple, was certainly a standard item of confectionary but it is now becoming more of a treat; if this continues, chocolate will be a luxury item. Shop around by all means for Easter chocolate but one thing for sure is that it will be a lot dearer than in 2023.


USD has traded in a range of EUR/USD 1.07-1.11 since November as markets try and work out when the Federal Reserve and the European Central Bank will cut their respective interest rates . On Friday it looked as if USD would manage to strengthen sufficiently to break out of that range , but having failed , it reverted to its previous level. Next release that might change that is Friday’s US Employment number.
EUR/USD 1.0835.


As we wrote recently we have seen markets declare an end to the current Bank of Japan ultra low interest rate policy before. Friday was a set piece move by Governor Kazuo Ueda when he wrong footed markets by saying that it was much too soon to declare the risks posed by inflation to be over. Cue a sell off in the Yen as the realization that rates were not going up in March and probably not in April either hit home. The result was that the USD strengthened against JPY the only major currency for the USD to do so on Friday.
USD/JPY 150.10.

Holiday Value

This is the time of year when as the days get that little bit longer, that Brits having put off expensive holiday destination decisions in the post Christmas blues period of January and February, start checking where they can get the best value for their British Pounds. With hotel prices falling sharply and the currency having slumped in the past year, the very best value is on offer in Turkey which tops the tree for best value for UK travellers. A year ago GBP/TRL stood at 22.6 whereas now it is at 39.73 a whopping 73% favourable move. You will be in good company if you decide to go to Turkey as 3.8 million Brits holidayed there in 2023 and that number can only go up in 2024. Other cheaper destinations having moved in favour of British holiday makers in the past year are Kenya 21%, Japan 16%, Czech Republic 13%, Thailand 10% and South Africa 9%.
GBP/KSH 182.30.

Ruby Tuesday

This day in 1967 this gem from the Rolling Stones went to Number One. The A side ie the main song on the 45rpm record was Let’s Spend the Night Together, but due to all that supposed innocence in those far off days, that song was relegated to the B side being thought by disc jockeys to be too raunchy for pop fans and Ruby Tuesday led the way on the A side.
She would never say where she came from
Yesterday don’t matter if it’s gone

While the sun is bright
Or in the darkest night
No one knows, she comes and goes

Goodbye, Ruby Tuesday
Who could hang a name on you?
When you change with every new day
Still, I’m gonna miss you

Don’t question why she needs to be so free
She’ll tell you it’s the only way to be

She just can’t be chained
To a life where nothing’s gained
And nothing’s lost, at such a cost

Goodbye, Ruby Tuesday
Who could hang a name on you?
When you change with every new day
Still, I’m gonna miss you

“There’s no time to lose, ” I heard her say
Catch your dreams before they slip away

Dying all the time
Lose your dreams and you will lose your mind
Ain’t life unkind?

Goodbye, Ruby Tuesday
Who could hang a name on you?
When you change with every new day
Still, I’m gonna miss you…

Discussion and Analysis by Humphrey Percy, Chairman and Founder

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