- With persistent dry conditions and continued strong global demand for feed wheat, all futures prices climbed higher for the fifth week in a row. CBOT soft red winter (SRW) futures rose 31 cents to close at $7.73/bu. KCBT hard red winter (HRW) futures were up 29 cents to end at $7.27/bu. MGE hard red spring (HRS) futures gained 26 cents to close at $7.89/bu. CBOT corn futures jumped 32 cents to end at $7.72/bu. CBOT soybean futures gained 50 cents to close at $16.21/bu.
- Gulf tributary basis is slightly up as farmer selling remained light and increased domestic demand supported export prices. Traders said hard red spring basis in the PNW was slightly down due to large old crop supply.
- USDA reported U.S. winter wheat conditions improved this week. Winter wheat reported as good or excellent was 49%, 2% ahead of last week’s rating as much needed rain occurred across the HRW producing region. USDA reported that the southern plains HRW crop was well over 60% headed as of May 2.
- U.S. spring wheat for harvest in fall 2021 is 49% planted, well ahead of the 32% five-year average. Spring wheat emergence is 14%, 4 points ahead of the five-year average.
- This week’s U.S. wheat commercial sales of 95,600 metric tons (MT) were down 57% from last week’s 223,600 MT but in line with trade expectations of 0 MT to 250,000 MT. Year-to-date commercial sales for delivery in 2020/21 total 25.5 million metric tons (MMT), 3% lower than last year. USDA expects total 2020/21 U.S. wheat exports will reach 26.8 MMT, 2% higher than last year, if realized.
- This week’s commercial sales for delivery in 2021/22 totaled 585,600 metric tons.
- View the most recent USW Commercial Sales report here.
U.S. Drought Monitor
- Storms across Texas brought between 2 and 10 inches of rain greatly improving soil moisture conditions. Areas of southern and eastern Oklahoma also received significant rainfall this week. The High Plains, including Kansas, Nebraska, Colorado, and Wyoming, also welcomed rain that reduced areas of severe drought in southwestern Nebraska and northwestern Kansas. Northeastern Colorado received 2 to 4 inches of rainfall boosting soil moisture. However, extreme drought conditions expanded in the Dakotas, and Oregon, Washington and Idaho continue to see below-average rainfall.
- Pakistan’s government announced it will import 4.0 MMT of wheat this year to meet domestic consumption. Wheat and wheat flour prices have doubled over the last three years, and inflation skyrocketed 11.1% in April alone. On April 27, Pakistan’s finance minister said the country had enough total wheat stocks to last two and a half weeks. Pakistan imported 3.6 MMT of wheat in the first nine months of the fiscal year. The government estimated 2021/22 wheat consumption at 29.3 MMT.
- Inflation in Argentina has reached 13% in the first quarter of 2021 according to the Argentine Central Bank. The government is weighing an export duty hike on grains to bring in more U.S. dollars and stem inflation. However, market participants warn that a tax hike would just deter greater famer planting, as historic USDA data indicates. The Buenos Aires Grains Exchange (BAGE) in its 2021/22 outlook estimates wheat production to be an all-time high of 19.0 MMT as yield has improved and farmers expanded planted acres.
- April French soft wheat exports outside of the European Union and UK were the lowest since 2012. French export data shows total 2020/21 French wheat exports are expected to be their lowest in four years. Traders blamed the slow exports on a price rally that made French wheat uncompetitive overseas and dwindling supplies from the poor 2020 French harvest.
Baltic and U.S. Dollar Indices
- The Baltic Index (BDI), an assessment of the average cost to ship raw materials such as grains, coal and iron ore, gained 6% on the week to end at 3,183.
- The U.S. Dollar Index decreased from last week’s 91.26 to close at 90.56.
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