Cocoa Bean Purchase Pushes Price to Record High

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The price of chocolate is on the rise after a large British hedge fund purchased a massive amount of the world's cocoa beans.

Anthony Ward, co-founder of the investment fund Armajaro Holdings, bought 241,000 tons of cocoa on July 16, sending the prices of the beans to their highest level in 33 years.

Friday's $1 billion transaction sparked concerns that Ward, dubbed "Choc Finger" by the media, could force manufacturers to raise the price of chocolate bars.
On financial expert explained that as the hedge fund buys up the beans, less chocolate is available, causing prices rise. That makes the beans the fund now owns worth more.

"Well as prices for the raw material increase, so will the price for the finished product tend to increase," Jack Scoville, vice president of Price Futures Group, explained.

"You don't necessarily see all the increase of the raw materials filter down to the consumer, but certainly a percentage of that has to eventually make it down to the consumer level," he said.

So far, consumers have been relatively unaffected. But as the prices of cocoa continue to rise, candy bars may get smaller - and more expensive.  

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