Markets, though mixed, registered more losses than gains. Australian eastern wheat futures settled 3pc lower.
- Chicago wheat December contract up US1/bu to 626.75c/bu;
- Kansas wheat December contract up 2.25c/bu to 781c/bu;
- Minneapolis wheat December contract down 10.5c/bu to 790c/bu;
- MATIF wheat December 2023 down €2/t to €224.25/t;
- Black Sea wheat December contract down US$1.75/t to $262.50/t;
- Corn September 2023 contract down 3.75c/bu to 516.25c/bu;
- Soybeans November 2023 contract down 6.75c/bu to 1146.5c/bu;
- Winnipeg November canola contract down C$3.30/t to $624.80/t;
- MATIF rapeseed November 2023 up €9/t to €403/t;
- ASX January 2024 wheat contract down A$11/t to $380/t;
- ASX January 2024 barley contract unchanged at $333/t;
- AUD dollar eased 15 points to US$0.6502.
Ukraine Agriculture Ministry reported grain exports ytd were 45.3Mt in 2022-23, including 15.4Mt wheat, down 17pc year on year, 2.6Mt barley, down 53pc y/y and 26.4Mt corn, up 21pc y/y.
Hungary requested EU extend import restrictions on Ukrainian grains and oilseed crops for five eastern European states at least until the end of 2023. Hungary also asked Brussels to grant financial support to local farmers to facilitate the transport of grain stocks stuck in domestic storage before this year’s harvest.
The European Commission revised upward its 2023-24 common wheat production forecast by 1.4Mt, to 131.5Mt (125.7Mt previous year), cut barley by 0.2Mt, to 52.0Mt (51.5Mt), cut maize by 0.3Mt, to 64.1Mt (52.1Mt) and revised upwards its rapeseed production forecast by 0.2Mt, to 20.2Mt (19.5Mt previous year).
Dryness concerns for US corn have increased from last week given that many crops will have to go at least another week without adequate rainfall, according to latest forecasts. Warmer than normal temps are also likely for the whole Corn Belt this week, potentially accelerating crop stress.
China’s Ag Ministry is urging local authorities to speed up harvesting and drying of damaged grain, after heavy rain in Henan, the country’s largest growing region. The ministry also advised sending emergency teams to drain water from fields, speed up access by harvesters and mobilise drying machinery to save as much of the crop as possible. It also urged buyers to purchase sprouted wheat that can still be used for feed or industrial purposes, while making sure it does not go to food.
China’s official manufacturing purchasing managers index unexpectedly fell to a five-month low of 48.8 in May, the second straight month of contraction. Output contracted for the first time in four months, while new orders, buying activity and export sales shrank.
US traders have reportedly purchased another 60,000t milling wheat (minimum 12.5pc-13.0pc protein), including 30,000t from Poland and 30,000t from Germany, for Jun/Aug shipment.
The local markets finished the day down across the board, with the new crop Jan 24 ASX Eastern Wheat contract down $18-19/t, with grower bids for new crop following suit. With rain on the forecast and softer international values the market had every reason to move lower. Current crop wheat and barley markets remained largely unchanged to a buck or two softer in some zones, while canola values also felt the brunt of the international downturn and peeled off $20-25/t.
Rabobank has tipped Australia’s 2023-24 winter crop area to be up slightly year on year at 23.48 million hectares, with area for wheat, barley and pulses all up for the season, but with canola planting down. Despite the higher area planted, production is forecast to be lower, with expectations of drier growing conditions due to the likely transition to an El Niño climate cycle. Assuming normal seasonal rainfall, Rabobank said wheat production for 2023-24 could be expected to reach 29.9Mt, barley 10.8Mt and canola 5.4Mt. With climate models indicating a transition to weak El Nino conditions, it said production could drop lower, potentially to the lowest total crop in four years.