Sweden’s Wheat Crop Set to Double in Recovery from Drought
Reuters – 07/15/2019
Sweden’s wheat harvest is expected to double this year in a recovery after a heatwave and drought devastated last year’s crop, giant Swedish farm cooperative Lantmannen said on Monday. Sweden’s 2019 wheat harvest could rise to about 3.2 million tonnes from only 1.6 million tonnes last year, said Mikael Jeppsson, the head of Lantmannen’s grains unit. “The crop should be large enough to enable Sweden to resume wheat exports,” Jeppsson said. The early harvest last year enabled a record high autumn sowing, he said. As autumn sown crops are higher yielding than spring sown crops, this has contributed to the bigger harvest this year. Wheat harvesting is expected to start at the end of July or early August. Indications are the harvest will reach a high quality. “Grain of high quality is of great importance in order to meet demand from both Swedish industry and export customers,” he said.
White House Completes MFP Review
Agri-Pulse – 07/15/2019
The White House Office of Management and Budget has finished its review of trade mitigation payments to the nation’s producers hit by a trade war with China. According to OMB’s website, the interagency review of USDA’s Market Facilitation Program, part of $16 billion in new ag trade assistance announced in May, concluded on Friday. President Donald Trump announced Monday that the package to help farmers deal with a loss of exports to China has been cleared for implementation. “So, I’m going to give the farmers — we’re going to help them out because they are great patriots,” Trump said Monday. “We’re going to give them $16 billion. And we just did. Been approved … And I approved it.The U.S. ag sector has been hit especially hard by the U.S.-China trade war over the past year, and hostilities seem to remain high despite the fact that both countries resumed negotiations last week after talks previously fell apart. Trump, after meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping in late June, said that China had agreed to begin increasing its ag imports from the U.S. as a show of good faith, but that hasn’t happened yet. Farmers have struggled since Chinese retaliatory tariffs have sharply reduced the grains, oilseeds, meat, fruit, vegetables, tree nuts and wine that U.S. producers can sell to some of their largest customers, but Trump promised that farmers will some of the biggest beneficiaries once the trade war is over. He stressed that the $16 billion will now be put “back into the farm and ag system and the farmers are thrilled …”
Trump Presses for USMCA Passage as Lighthizer, Lawmakers Prepare to Meet
Reuters – 07/15/2019
President Donald Trump and his top advisers on Monday stepped up their drive to win congressional passage of a trade deal with Canada and Mexico, as the administration’s top trade official prepared to meet with Democratic lawmakers again this week. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow lauded the economic and job-creating benefits of the deal, which was signed in November but must be ratified by lawmakers in all three countries. Kudlow told Fox Business Network he was optimistic the trade agreement could win passage despite a vow by Democrats, who control the House of Representatives, to block the deal until their concerns over environmental, labor and pharmaceutical aspects of the deal are met. “I’m optimistic that we have a very good chance of getting that through,” Kudlow said, citing the “cooperation and accommodation” of House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi in resolving disagreements. He said the agreement would add about half a percentage point of economic growth to the U.S. economy, creating several hundred thousand jobs and sparking up to $100 billion in new investments in the United States.
Smaller Wheat Carryover Forecast for 2020 Boosts Wheat Futures
World-Grain – 07/12/2019
The U.S. Department of Agriculture in its July 11 World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates report, forecast the carryover of U.S. wheat on June 1, 2020, at 1 billion bushels, down 72 million bushels, or 7%, from 1.072 billion bushels as both the June forecast and the 2018 carryover estimate and below the average of trade expectations. The cut in the carryover was driven by a boost in projected 2019-20 exports as the result of a large cut in world wheat production and trade.
After the report was issued, Kansas City September wheat futures rallied 20¢ a bushel on July 11, Chicago September was up 16¾¢ a bushel and Minneapolis gained 12½¢ a bushel. All three contracts traded lower earlier in the week. World wheat ending stocks were forecast at 286.46 million tonnes, down 7.88 million tonnes, or 2.7%, from the June forecast but still up 11.31 million tonnes, or 4.1%, from 275.15 million tonnes in 2018-19. The lower ending stocks forecast was driven by a 10-million-tonne reduction in forecast production among the world’s major exporters, with export forecasts lowered for three of the top six exporters, including Russia, the world’s largest wheat exporter, with production forecast at 74.2 million tonnes, down 3.8 million tonnes, and exports at 34.5 million tonnes, down 2.5 million tonnes. Still, Russia’s production, if realized, would be the second largest on record. “Lower forecast production in five of the world’s six major exporters was really the story,” said Paul Meyers, vice-president of commodity analysis, Foresight Commodity Services, Inc.
Source: U.S. Wheat Associates