The Bottom Line For Wheat: There’s Plenty of it, Analyst Says
Successful Farming – 10/25/2019
The most positive part of the week for wheat was the higher start Monday morning. It was mostly downhill from there, culminating in a weekly reversal down after a seven-week rally. Kansas City was down 11¢ on the week; Minneapolis down 8 and Chicago down 14. Crop progress reports show the spring wheat harvest 96% complete nationwide, and winter wheat plantings at 77%. The remaining harvest will be just feed wheat, if it gets harvested at all. As for winter wheat plantings, the northern states are running well behind normal, so it’s likely there won’t be much more planted at this late date. Early estimates are suggesting total winter wheat planting will be down again this year to a new all-time low. Despite continued weather delays to wrapping up spring wheat and durum harvest, wheat markets seem to be running out of upward momentum. World prices did manage a bit higher trade this week, with Russian FOB offers up another $1/MT to stand around $207/MT.
Markets Waiting for US Exports to Pick Up
Agweek – 10/27/2019
The wheat complex had a negative tone with improving Canadian harvest progress and poor weekly export sales. Chicago and Kansas City contracts experienced key downward reversals in Oct. 21 trade. The U.S. dollar leveled off and rebounded off the $97 area December after a week of declines. The Bank of Australia estimates wheat production at 15.5 million metric tons, well below U.S. Department of Agriculture’s current estimate of 18 million metric tons. Weekly export sales were the lowest in 18 weeks at 262,400 metric tons (9.6 million bushels). This is roughly half the weekly “needed” pace to reach USDA’s export target of 950 million bushels. Weekly export inspections were at the top end of expectations at 565,000 metric tons (20.8 million bushels). Cumulative exports of 370 million bushels are running 22% higher than last year’s pace.
While US-China ‘Phase One’ Trade Deal Stops Escalation, Analysts Not Optimistic for More by Year End
CNBC – 10/28/2019
The U.S. and China need a more comprehensive trade agreement before market sentiment can be boosted sustainably, analysts said on Monday. “In order to have, I think, a meaningful impact as far as shifting the needle on global growth sentiment and away from the U.S. still being the primary driver of global growth, you would have to see an agreement that includes — if not an actual winding back of tariffs — but at least a clear pathway to the winding back,” said Ray Attrill, head of FX strategy at National Australia Bank. On Friday, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative said the two economic giants have made progress in trade discussions. Following a conversation that U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin had with Chinese Vice Premier Liu He, the office said in a statement the two “made headway on specific issues and the two sides are close to finalizing some sections of the agreement.”
US Spring Wheat Harvest Struggles, Winter Planting Continues at Strong Pace
S&P Global – 10/22/2019
The harvest of US spring wheat for the 2019-20 crop year (June-May) reached 96% in the week to October 20 amid slow harvest in North Dakota and Montana, data from the US Department of Agriculture showed. Spring wheat harvest is below both last year’s average and the five-year average pace, when harvest was 100% complete by this time. Harvest in the latest week is also below market expectations of 97%. North Dakota and some parts of the Midwest recently faced a snowstorm, which slowed down harvesting in the region. All the remaining snow cover across North Dakota has now melted, but soil remains wet, preventing fieldwork, US-based Maxar Technologies said in its latest note. North Dakota is expected to produce 8.7 million mt of spring wheat in 2019-20, the largest volume among all US states.
Flour Mill in Baltimore County, Maryland’s Last Commerical Mill, to Shut Down
The Wahsington Post – 10/15/2019
Maryland will lose its last commercial grain mill when a flour and corn mill on the banks of the Patapsco River across from old Ellicott City shuts down early next year. Wilkins-Rogers Inc. plans to relocate its Oella milling operations somewhere in the Midwest, according to Baltimore County officials who have been in contact with the company. The closure would end more than two centuries of milling in and around Ellicott City, dating back to the mill established on the same site by the Ellicott brothers in 1774. Wilkins-Rogers has run the Frederick Road mill since 1969 and still employs about 30 people there. Mill officials did not respond to repeated requests for comment. Officials in Baltimore County’s Economic and Workforce Development office were told the mill would close early next year, said Sean Naron, a county spokesman. He said he believed Wilkins-Rogers planned to move to be closer to grain suppliers.
Source: U.S. Wheat Associates