CBOT/MATIF close lower on the week following mixed data from USDA.
- US corn stocks decreased more than expected to 54.04mmt, down 5.71mmt (trade est. 58.5mmt).
- US corn consumption placed at 319.93mmt, with exports placed at 56.52mmt on perceived reduction in South American production (up 1.27mmt and 4.45mmt respectively). Reaffirms underlying strength of corn demand.
- Global 17/18 wheat ending stocks increased 2.79mmt to a record 268.89mmt (trade est. 265.7mmt).
- Brazil’s corn crop only reduced 500tmt to 94.5mmt in spite of recent weather stress. CONAB, Brazil’s private forecaster, suggest 87.3mmt.
- EU wheat exports reduced by 1mmt to 25mmt (trade expecting closer to 20mmt for the season). Russian exports increased to 37.5mmt up 35% on last season (up 1.5mmt).
- US funds estimated net short 55.4k wheat, long 208.7k corn and 124k soybeans.
- Bioethanol plant Vivergo expected to re-open following an extended closure this week. Should help support old crop wheat market in the South.
- BAGE place Argentine corn crop at 34mmt, with soybeans reported at 42mmt (down 3mmt and 2mmt respectively on the week).
- BAGE place Argentine corn crop at 69% poor/very poor condition (77% p/vp last week). Argentina continues to suffer from dryness. Scattered showers forecast for this week, with more significant rains for the week following. Brazilian forecast appear drier for the next 10 days, before turning wetter.
- ¾ of the US HRW Belt expected to remain dry for the next 2 weeks – some suggestion of better rains to follow. EU/Black Sea conditions remain largely unthreatening.
- USDA data released on Thursday perceived to be somewhat bearish wheat, bullish corn, on balance, with market attention returning to weather quickly afterwards.
- Trade perception remains that with record stocks of wheat reported globally, something more than just the current US problem will be required to significantly tighten supplies – and at present, there is no such issue.
- Moreover, US funds have reduced wheat shorts and built a sizeable long corn position over the last 2 weeks. Continuation of dry US HRW weather should curtail selloffs to an extent, whilst wheat should also continue to draw support from corn whilst demand remains strong and SA weather appears problematic.
- Look for US/SA weather to continue to dictate direction day to day, with volatile/choppy trade likely in advance of spring.