Markets

Daily Market Wire 17 March 2021

Lachstock Consulting, March 17, 2021

Grains and oilseeds futures had a mixed session. Crude oil was off half a buck to $64.8 WTI / $68.4 Brent and the DOW lost 128 points.

  • Chicago wheat May contract up US2c/bu to 647c;
  • Kansas wheat May contract up 1.5c/bu to 608.25c;
  • Minneapolis wheat May contract down 1.25c/bu to 635.75c;
  • MATIF wheat May contract down €1/t to €222;
  • Corn May contract up 4.75c/bu to 553.75c;
  • Soybeans May contract up 3.75c/bu to 1423.25c;
  • Winnipeg canola May contract down C$7.60/t to $795.30;
  • MATIF rapeseed May contract down €0.50/t to €525.75;
  • US dollar index up 0.1 to 91.9;
  • AUD steady at US$0.775;
  • CAD firmer at $1.244;
  • EUR weaker at $1.190;
  • ASX wheat May contract down A$3/t to $288;
  • ASX wheat January 2022 up $3.50/t to $300.

International

Germany/France/Italy suspended use of the AstraZeneca vaccine amid health concerns.

The US Federal Reserve meeting this week will be closely watched for their opinions on interest rates and the economic recovery.

The US crop conditions reports saw Kansas Hard Red Winter wheat good-to-excellent ratings lift 2 per cent, Oklahoma 4pc and Texas unchanged.

Texas corn planting progress had lifted to 26pc, right about average, and there is talk of scattered early plant wheat/corn/beans in northern areas in recent days with the warm weather. Early planters are taking some risk about a spring cold snap, but some will play the gamble.

The US prospective plantings report due for release on 31 March will provide USDA’s first official plantings estimate of 2021 corn, beans, spring wheat and sorghum area.

We finally saw a new corn flash sale with 1.156 million tonnes (Mt) of old crop (20/21) US corn reported sold to China.  Some questions arose about whether this will result in offsets against existing unknown sales, but at the same time bulls are treating it as confirmation of the demand program despite the tight US balance sheet.

A first under the new US Administration, the US Secretary of State will meet with Chinese officials on Thursday. The trade deal doesn’t sound like a key talking point, but the meeting will be closely watched for indications about the potential for future conflict over other topics, which will likely include the conflict in Hong Kong and the Uighurs.

Brazilian weather maps continue to gradually shift towards the drier side, finally giving some relief to the messy harvest for many.

Speculation about Russia potentially cutting the export tax program has done the rounds after comments from Russia’s Ag Minister.  They also re-emphasized their focus on domestic markets though, suggesting that any changes may be far away.

Australia

Rains still set to move across parts of NW NSW today with rains picking up overnight west of Walgett.  Forecasts are still calling for a widespread 30+ mm event into the weekend too, with coverage pushing out to include the NSW Riverina region in the latest map runs.

The federal government made comments the other day suggesting that they finally will be following up on the China/barley situation with the WTO.  Any WTO proceedings are unlikely to have any near-term impacts and can drag out for years.

Lachstock offices are in internal meetings for most of this week.  Email and phone will be attended but responses may be delayed.

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