Daily Market Wire 30 March 2020

Lachstock Consulting March 30, 2020

Futures mostly firmer and US dollar weaker.

  • Chicago wheat May contract up US2.25¢/bu to 571.25¢;
  • Kansas wheat May contract down 0.5c to 486.75¢;
  • Minneapolis wheat May contract up 5.75c to 537¢;
  • MATIF wheat May contract up €1.50/t to €195/t;
  • Corn May contract down 2.75c/bu to 346¢;
  • Soybeans May contract up 1.25¢/bu to 881.5¢;
  • Winnipeg canola May contract up $C0.10 to $462.90/t;
  • MATIF rapeseed May contract up €4.50 to €356.50/t;
  • Brent crude May contract down US$1.41 per barrel to $24.93;
  • Dow Jones index down 915 points to 21637;
  • AUD firmer at $0.6150:
  • CAD firmer at $1.4054;
  • EUR firmer at $1.1093

Market news

A quiet end to the week on grain markets after some early volatility in wheat amidst Russian export restriction proposals.

Macro markets continue to watch coronavirus cases, which (by the latest figures) appear to by starting the inevitable slowdown – but we’ll see how the figures come out this week as there have been a few temporary stall points previously

Russia’s come out with a grain (wheat, barley, corn, and some minor) export proposal limit at 7 million tonnes until the end of June – but of note, this does not impact the new season crop where it matters most.  At this point it’s still a proposal, we’ll see if it happens – but if so it will slightly tighten up the end of the season window globally.  Short and technical squeeze potential if it happens.  Logistics do remain a bit of a mess internally in Europe too, which won’t help if there’s a broader export need pre-newcrop harvest.

No such logistical support to be seen on the row crop side though, with Brazil announcing that grain movements (all trucking) is “essential” and not subject to lockdowns.  There are still some challenges in the short term in South America (particularly in Argentina), but the fear of an immediate bean export stoppage has eased back.

Meanwhile, talk about Chinese ethanol imports has markets speculating a bit there – but in the short term the crushed (no pun intended…) ethanol margins continue to weigh heavily on corn cash markets in the US.

Ethanol buyers are still no bid for corn in many areas, and more discussion about contract washouts on prior sales.  Big acres are still looking likely with bean/corn ratios where they are, but we’ll see what the market things of USDA figures come Tuesday.  The survey results will be a little bit out of date by the time they’re published (given the massive moves since survey), but they’ll at least give the market a central benchmark.

There were also two flashed corn export sales that hit on Friday, though to unknown (further China business?).  Corn planting has reportedly started in Ukraine already (it’s been rolling in the southern US for a few weeks now), and will rapidly start moving into more central areas.



Aussie markets continue to fixate on the global problems although farmers are looking quickly towards planting. Recent rains in northern NSW have done nothing but help the situation there and should continue to fill in across some more southern areas this week.  Lots of pre-plant activity going on with weed control a priority given that we now have moisture to be seen.


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