Daily Market Wire 20 April 2023

Lachstock Consulting, April 20, 2023

Canola prices and offshore wheat markets eased almost 2pc Tuesday. Corn soybeans half that amount.

  • Chicago wheat December 2023 contract down US15 cents per bushel to 719.75c/bu;
  • Kansas wheat December 2023 contract down 16.5c/bu to 845.5c/bu;
  • Minneapolis wheat December 2023 down 16.5c/bu to 867.5c/bu;
  • MATIF wheat December 2023 down €5/t to €256.50/t;
  • Black Sea wheat December 2023 down US$1.75/t to $290.75/t;
  • Corn July 2023 contract down 8c/bu to 636.5c/bu;
  • Soybeans July 2023 contract down 12.25c/bu to 1478.75c/bu;
  • Winnipeg canola July 2023 contract down C$9.40/t to $743.90/t;
  • MATIF rapeseed August 2023 contract down €7/t to €469.50/t;
  • ASX January 2024 wheat contract up A$5/t to $396/t;
  • ASX January 2024 barley contract up A$5/t to $340.20/t;
  • AUD dollar eased 10 points to US$0.6714


There were some fundamental shifts overnight. Agricultural commodities eased across the board and crude oil led the charge. There were lots of reasons why Ags fell but this felt more like an asset class de-risk. 

Rain on the Plains is forecast. HRW wheat is set to get a drink with some more moisture being built into the 6-10 day forecast. It is definitely crunch time for the US crop with conditions having been about as bad as they can be. Kansas wheat harvest generally starts in early June so rain would still help that crop. 

A looming deadline is still some time away, but the prevent-plant dates for spring wheat and row crops are at the end of May for the bigger production states where, at the moment, the country is still white with snow. 

The Black Sea Grain Initiative confusion means little certainty whether the export corridor is on, or not on. Next week’s meeting between Russia and the UN will dictate the future of the corridor but, in the meantime, it seems Ukrainian vessels are being inspected again. Russia has suggested Ukraine is asking for “payment” to facilitate inspections. 

Europe has indicated it will allow Ukraine to send grain their way but under some conditions including paying a subsidy to growers near the Ukraine border. Poland last week had put up the shutters under pressure from grower groups sick of cheap grain pouring into their country. Hungary still wants no part of it, still banning Ukraine products.
Russia’s new crop wheat production should be around 78Mt according to a statement from the agriculture minister, a sizeable drop from the more than 100Mt it managed to produce last season.

StatsCan shortly will release Canada’s initial planted area forecasts for 2023 canola. Analysts expect it to be around 22.1million acres, around 3.3pc higher than last year. 


Local markets had a midweek mixed bag across the boards yesterday. Delivered Melbourne wheat last half April/May eased, while eastern Australian track wheat was unchanged. WA ASW1 wheat, at $355/t FIS, was also left unchanged. Barley was bid again a touch firmer. Canola went for another run with bids up $30/t in eastern Australia which tempted sellers and provided liquidity.

The shipping stem for April is continuing to build vessel numbers and tonnage, presently 4.6Mt of total grains up from 4.35Mt last week. Wheat, at 3.3Mt, is up from 3.1Mt. Barley, at 556,000t, is down slightly from 578,000t. Canola, at 566,000t, is up from 541,000t and sorghum, at 180,000t, is up from 130,000t. 

Minimal rainfall is forecast for WA, northern NSW and parts of Qld cropping regions over the next 8-10 days. SA and Victorian cropping belts are forecast to receive up to 15-20mm. Planting already is underway around the country. Germinating canola and early grazing crops are beginning to emerge. 


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