Thursday was another pretty dull day. Soybeans refusing to go testing the $10 level (for just 3 ticks) was probably the main event of the day, the closed well off from their highs, losing a couple of ticks on the close. Corn and Wheat were on the upside, there is still a bit of short covering before the Monday’s USDA WASDE. Funds bought 8,000 Corn and 2,000 Wheat while they sold 3,000 Soybeans. MATIF Milling Wheat continued to be murdered on the front month, U6 losing -€2.75 while Z6 was flat. It seems like the idea to get deliver potentially Romanian wheat is not very appealing but at some point, if the contango is paying the quarry… The problem could be just postponed to Z6. There’s still a bit of margin for this.
But today, there’s again some pressure on the spread, trading close to -€17! Monday, last day of the U6 trading could be fun, and on top of this it will be the first day of trading of the CME Wheat… And of course the USDA WASDE. Not much on the US markets today, Corn is just losing a few ticks while Wheat reverted its yesterday move and Soybeans still attracted by the $10 level.
EU Cleared a very good 521kT of soft wheat export licences. This week, Lithuania was the leader with 150.2kT, while Germany took the season lead in (1.12MT) in front of Romania (1.07MT) and France (0.94MT). EU also cleared 54kT of corn import new crop while 125kT of imports were cleared on the old crop, totalising 1.5MT over the season. Finally, to be noticed, 20,800T of Ukrainian barley has been imported on the tariff-free quota. On the other side of the pond, a very pacey export sales! US sold 662.1kT of wheat, 1,123.8kT of Corn and 1,784.8kT.
Bullish US Crude Oil inventories yesterday! Stocks were down -14.5M barrels over the week (it was expected at +0.6MT). It obviously made the market rebounded but it’s reversing today almost completely and NYMCEX Crude has still a $46 handle and ICE Brent a $48 handle. Meanwhile, ethanol data was contrasted: production went down below 1M barrels to 998k barrels per day (-25k from the week before) but stocks went down more than this: -272k barrels to 20.65M barrels. On Freight, Baltic Dry Index BADI is still driven up by good demand on larger vessels, finishing the week at 804.
The strength of yesterday ECB status quo and continuation of the QE did not last. Bad data in Europe: trade balance excess lower than expected in Germany, French industrial production in France badly hit month on month (-0.6% while +0.2% was expected). EURUSD retracted sharply below 1.13 and is currently trading just above 1.12.