Get ready for a slow one today—volume was understandably abysmal overnight, at least deferring any real challenge of recent lows for now, with wheat finding some help on more volatile HRWW forecasts as well
Egypt’s GASC yesterday bought 120k tonnes of Argentine wheat for January 21-31 shipment, priced just under $191/tonne cost & freight.
Russian export data showed grain exports from December 1-22 at 3.0 MMT, including 1.9 MMT of wheat, compared to 3.13 MMT in all of November (2.02 MMT of wheat); cumulative grain exports since July 1 stand at 21.7 MMT, including 15.2 MMT of wheat.
The Argentine Ag Ministry yesterday pegged the country’s 2015/16 wheat production at 10.9 MMT, compared to an earlier range of 10-12 MMT; ‘15/16 corn plantings were pegged at 5.4 million hectares (13.3 mln acres), up from 5.3 mln ha previously, with soybean acreage seen at 20.7 mln ha (51.15 ml acres) compared to 20.6 mln ha last month.
Morocco announced a cut of their soft wheat import duty from 50% to 30% yesterday due to late rains threatening the 2016 harvest, despite a record 11 MMT 2015 crop. The country has imported around 4 MMT in recent seasons, though the USDA currently sees imports of just 2.8 MMT in ‘15/16, however essentially none of that has come from the United States.
The European Union granted 648k tonnes of soft wheat export licenses this week, bring the total since July 1 to 12.1 MMT—down from 14.4 MMT LY.
Yesterday’s USDA Hogs & Pigs Report showed all U.S. hogs as of Dec 1 at 100.8% of last year, slightly below the average 101.4% estimate; however the absolute figure at 68.3 million head was the largest 12/1 number since records began in 1988. Breeding hogs came in at 101.1% of LY, a shade above the 100.9% guess, while marketings at 100.7% of LY fell short of the 101.4% est.
Weekly DOE total fuel ethanol production dropped off to 973,000 barrels per day for the seven days ending 12/18, down from an even million bpd the previous week and actually below 992k bpd on the comparable week last year. Ethanol output has its seasonal (five-year average) peak in the first week of December, generally declining through the holidays and putting in lows again in late April/early May.
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