Articles of Interest- Monday, November 4, 2019
November 4, 2019
Wheat Finds a Late Week Rally
Successful Farming – 11/01/2019
It was another week of quietly drifting lower until late Thursday when we got a bounce off early weakness and scored what looked like a minor spike bottom. The follow-through buying on Friday suggests we should have more rally power into next week. Export sales last week came in at 494 TMT, with spring wheat the highest seller at 177 TMT. Year-to-date sales stand at 14.5 MMT, 56% of the total projections and slightly behind the average pace of 63%. Winter wheat plantings stood at 85% complete as of last week, up 8 points from the previous week and 3 points above the average. However, Montana’s plantings were 8 points behind the average at 87%. We also got the first conditions report of the fall, with 56% of the nation’s winter wheat in good/excellent condition, 3 points ahead of last year.
Russia Has a New Challenger to Wheat Traders in World’s Top Market
Bloomberg – 11/04/2019
A Russian state-backed grain trader is muscling its way into wheat tenders in Egypt, the world’s biggest buyer, and competing against private companies that have long dominated sales.
United Grain Co. started participating in the tenders in August through its Grain Export SA unit, and accounted for about a quarter of all Russian wheat sold to Egypt’s state buyer so far this season. That’s a challenge to other traders of Russian grain, which has almost exclusively been supplied in recent years by international merchants like Cargill Inc. or local firms such as Garant Logistic. Grain Export said it started taking part in Egyptian tenders in a bid to expand its export business. The company has been able to offer attractive prices partly because its owner runs one of Russia’s biggest Black Sea grain terminals, which significantly reduces costs, as well as favorable financing terms. “Competition among traders is very acute this season,” said Andrey Sizov Jr., managing director at consultant SovEcon in Moscow. “United Grain would have a much harder time selling something if they hadn’t owned part of a port terminal.”
Phase One Trade Deal with China is in Good Shape
Reuters – 11/01/2019
The initial “phase one” trade pact with China appears to be in good shape and is likely to be signed around mid-November, although a finite date is still in question, U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said on Friday. “We’re pretty comfortable that the phase one is in good shape,” he told Fox Business Network in an interview. U.S. President Donald Trump and other administration officials had looked toward the Nov. 11-17 Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation summit as a possible venue to sign the deal with Chinese President Xi Jinping before Chile this week canceled its plan to host the international summit. “Hopefully we can resurrect a date right in that range,” Ross told the television network, adding that the question of a new location remained…U.S. President Donald Trump and other administration officials had looked toward the Nov. 11-17 Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation summit as a possible venue to sign the deal with Chinese President Xi Jinping before Chile this week canceled its plan to host the international summit.
Farmers in wait-and-see Mode with China’s Promise to Buy More Ag Products
The Gazette – 11/03/2019
American farmers battered by President Trump’s protracted trade war with China could see some much-needed relief, as the door slammed shut by Beijing on U.S. agricultural products has cracked. However, for those gripped by more than a year of roller-coaster trade tensions, the prospect of China buying as much as $50 billion in farm products, as announced by Trump this month, is being met with a dose of skepticism. “It is progress, but there’s still a long way to go and a lot of questions on the $40 to $50 billion,” said Michelle Jones, a farmer in Montana who raises wheat, barley, corn, and sunflowers. “The non-tariff barriers, the less-exciting stuff, that is the stuff that really has the potential to be a big deal depending on how it gets on paper.”
Global Conditions Push Wheat Prices Up for Oklahoma Farmers
The Oklahoman – 11/03/2019
Oklahoma farmers are seeing some growth on wheat market prices as they near the end of the planting season for the coming year’s crop. Over the past six weeks, the market price for hard red winter wheat has climbed 40 cents a bushel. Kim Anderson, Oklahoma State University Cooperative Extension emeritus grain marketing specialist, said factors outside of the U.S. are impacting the market. Australia, he observed, is losing its third crop in as many years because of drought. And Argentina, which had been projected to have a record wheat crop, also has been hit with dry conditions and has lowered its harvest estimates as a result. “Then you’ve got the Black Sea area, where exports are significantly lower than they were at the same time last year,” Anderson said. “So, world wheat prices are up about 40 to 45 cents, and U.S. wheat prices are up about 40 cents” a bushel, he said.
Source: U.S. Wheat Associates