Daily Market Wire 17 February 2021

Lachstock Consulting, February 17, 2021

Wheat firmness from the overnight exchanges held into the US day session amidst ongoing concerns about winter kill, leading corn and beans markets firmer also.

  • Chicago wheat March contract up 20.75c/bu to 657.5;
  • Kansas wheat March contract up 20.75c/bu to 637.5;
  • Minneapolis wheat March contract up 15.25c/bu to 631.25;
  • MATIF wheat March contract up €2/t to €230.50/t;
  • Corn March contract up 13.5c/bu to 552.25;
  • Soybeans March contract up 12.75c/bu to 1384.75;
  • Winnipeg canola March contract up C$7.60/t to $738;
  • MATIF rapeseed May contract up €7.50/t to €461.50;
  • Brent crude April up US$0.21 per barrel to $63.51;
  • Dow Jones index up 64 to 31523;
  • US dollar index up 0.2 to 90.5
  • AUD weaker at $0.776;
  • CAD weaker at $1.268;
  • EUR weaker at $1.212


The main market-moving news overnight was winter kill damage and risk in US Hard Red Winter (HRW) and western Soft Red Winter (SRW) wheat areas after the recent cold snap.  Emails and broker wires are doing the rounds showing snow cover maps. Of course everyone has their own opinion about how accurate those maps are. There was a solid snow fall prior to the coldest snap, but it’s a million-dollar debate about how much insulation/protection the crop ultimately saw. US weather service, NOAA, snow analyses are available here.

Speaking of winter kill, Russian and Ukrainian weather maps are holding fairly steady into the next two weeks with no new immediate concerns and a fair amount of snow still across the coldest winter wheat areas.

We’re back into politicking mode over the new US stimulus bill. Markets are still waiting for the final agreement/passing of the bill, which pundits now are suggesting could be by the end of the month.

The weekly US export inspections, a day delayed with the holiday, reported no real surprises 393,000t wheat, 1.3 million tonnes corn and 800,000t beans, slightly weaker than some expectations but not out of ballpark.  There was also 70,000t milo/sorghum, all to China.

Registration for USDA’s annual outlook forum webcast this Thursday/Friday US time is free and available here.

Brazilian bean harvest is slowly picking up pace. Private guesses in the low 10pc range as of last night, but still well below half of “normal” by this point.  Similar delays are continuing for safrinha corn planting, following beans, keeping the spectre of yield drag ever present.

US National Oilseed Processors Association (NOPA) soybean crush figures for January were 184.6 million bushels, slightly above expectations and a January crush record.  Bean oil stocks were also above expectations though, at 1.799 billion lbs.

No word yet on Algeria’s OAIC (Office Algérien Interprofessionnel des Céréales) wheat tender results. Expect to see unofficial results trickling out later tonight Aussie time or early tomorrow morning.  Markets are still comfortable that there will be a fair chunk of French in the mix.

The Ukrainian state statistics agency has pegged winter wheat planted acreage at 6.7mha and barley at 1.1mha, both up about 10pc from prior AgMinistry figures.

Jordanian barley tender from the other day, for Sep/Oct shipment, was cancelled and is set to re-run again next week.


Local markets firmed yesterday with the stronger overnight opens on CBOT. Some east coast wheat and barley values lifted $5/t higher, higher bids finally emerging after last week’s weaker trend.

ASX east coast wheat nearby futures, rising about $4/t, followed the local cash market, with some spread trading on the front end as March delivery approaches. The January 2022 contract saw a little action, pushing up $1/t to $306/t.

More pulse trading activity underway with some upcoming bulk vessels getting covered in SA/Victoria, but box traders still reporting logistical messes.

Weather maps largely unchanged with a few better chances for coastal showers in Queensland but otherwise a fairly dry set of two-week maps.

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