The Grain Hedge Team provides a macro-focused daily view of the world’s grain markets. Kevin McNew received a bachelor’s degree from Oklahoma State University and his master’s and Ph.D. degrees in Economics from North Carolina State University. He spent 10 years as a Professor of Economics with the University of Maryland and Montana State University focusing on commodity markets and is widely regarded for his ability to boil-down complex economic situations into easy-to-understand concepts for applied life.
US Corn Still in Demand without China
Feb 06, 2014
Corn pulled back overnight but still manages to be on track for a third week in a row of advances. In the night trade, corn was off 2 cents while soybeans and wheat posted slight gains of 2 and 3 cents, respectively.
In corn, weekly export sales on Thursday came in at an impressive 1.7 MMT on Thursday, well over the trade expectations of 1.2 MMT going into the report. Japan was a big buyer, acquiring nearly 800,000 MT some of which was switched from China. Also on Thursday, USDA announced China had canceled 220,000 MT of US corn it had previously purchased. China still has about 1.5 MMT of US corn outstanding that it has not shipped. Overnight, South Korea was an active buyer as two different feed groups bought 59,000 MT of US corn that had been previously shipped to China.
For soybeans, front-month March has not been able to hold above the $13.30 mark in the past two sessions. Upside resistance is around $13.38, which is the highest point of prices since the end of 2013, is the next upside target. Old-crop soybean sales were still impressive for the week at 577,000 MT but soymeal was exceptionally strong at 283,700 MT. China has yet to cancel any significant quantities of US bean purchases as the latest data still showed them as net buyers of 436,400 MT of US soybeans for the week. Monday’s USDA report could prove interesting as soybean bookings of 43 MMT for the marketing year already surpass USDA annual forecast of 40.7 MMT.
In the wheat market, US exports have ticked higher in recent weeks thanks to logistical problems out of Canada and the Ukraine. However, Russia found renewed business overnight with a 25,000 MT deal with Lebanon, and part of a 400,000 MT purchase by Iran of Russian and European wheat. Japan is seeking to buy 28,655 MT of late June-arrival Canadian Western Red Spring wheat, in an atypical tender issued on Friday, after failing to pick up that amount of the grade in a regular tender, a farm ministry official said on Friday. On Thursday, Japan bought a total of 284,161 MT of food quality wheat from the U.S., Canada and Australia in its regular tender, or all of the 312,816 MT it tendered for except for the one Canadian lot in the reissue.