Daily Market Wire 29 January 2021

Lachstock Consulting January 29, 2021

Grains came under sell side pressure overnight as the rally stumbled and, despite supportive sales figures, markets ran out of new bullish buying interest.

  • Chicago wheat March contract down US11.25 cents per bushel to 647c;
  • Kansas wheat March contract down 10.75c/bu to 626c;
  • Minneapolis wheat March contract down 13.25c/bu to 619.5c;
  • MATIF wheat March contract down €1.25/t to €229.75/t;
  • Corn March contract up 0.5c/bu to 534.5c;
  • Soybeans March contract down 21.5c/bu to 1353.25c;
  • Winnipeg canola March contract down C$18.70/t to $699.10;
  • MATIF rapeseed May contract down €2/t to €434.75;
  • Brent crude March down US$0.28 per barrel to $55.53;
  • Dow Jones index up 300 to 30,603;
  • US dollar index down 7 points to 90.53;
  • AUD firmer at $0.768;
  • CAD weaker at $1.281;
  • EUR firmer at $1.213


While the GME Gamestop short squeeze story, entrancing macro markets all week, has negligible impact to the ag markets, Lachstock is watching for potential regulatory changes to follow. The shenanigans have attracted significant political interest.

USDA overnight suspended Coronavirus Food Assistance Program payments to farmers pending new Biden administration “review”.

Massive new corn sales hit again in the US with a flash reporting 1.7 million tonnes of 20/21, i.e.old crop, corn to China and 214,000t to unknown. As many have noted, this is one of the biggest flash sales report on record ever.

Regular export sales were also better than expected for corn at 1.8Mt, beans at 466,000t old crop, and new crop 1.5Mt.  Wheat was 381,000t including a new China boat) and milo was 185,000t but included a Chinese cancellation.

There’s plenty of speculation going around about Chinese demand after the recent sales. Various private ideas talking 25-30Mt of corn and up to 110Mt of beans, but still significant uncertainty about how much is covered compared with remaining needs.  One fairly well-known analyst group has been pushing such figures to reports in the broader markets, so we’re expecting to see more widespread discussion there, outside of our small pond ag world.

New crop acreage ideas in the US are back into the focus for next week, as we move into the crop insurance spring pricing window. It’s a key driver in final row crop acreage decisions.  Everyone’s confident in the overall expansion of the corn/bean pie at the expense of almost everything else, excepting milo. But ideas on the shift to beans, mostly away from corn, are wide spread.  Strong price spreads and absolutes are very supportive to more beans, but the million acre question is how much planting area will move

Brazilian rains remain heavy on the maps across central soybean areas into next week, and driving some to push back their harvest estimates slightly further

Heavy snows in parts of the Black Sea region are causing some localised logistics delays in much of Ukraine and a few spots in Russia, but boosting optimism about the dormant winter wheat crop as we approach spring.


Solid rains have been running over 50 mm in many parts of Victoria and 25+ for some in south/central NSW.  There were some short-term logistics concerns caused by moisture and road transport issues.

There are still a few very localised paddocks unharvested in parts of Vic.  At this point they’d all be written off from a quality point of view, but it would be a very minor tonnage impact.

Short covering from spot/nearby deliveries to endpoints is still dominating local markets.

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