- France cuts estimates for winter wheat, rapeseed seedings
France ditched ideas of above-average winter grain sowings this year, trimming expectations for plantings of both wheat and rapeseed area, while making a small upgrade to the barley seeding estimate. The farm ministry in France, the European Union’s top grain producer, downgraded by 68,000 hectares to a four-year low of 7.08m hectares its estimate for sowings of the main winter cereals plus rapeseed for the 2018 harvest. The revision, which took the figure below the average of 7.13m hectares, reflected in the main a cut of 70,000 hectares to 4.96m hectares the estimate for plantings of winter wheat. Seedings at that level would represent a recovery of only 4,000 hectares from 2017 area, which was downgraded to a five-year low. The ministry flagged that area had fallen by 12.6% in Lorraine, in north east France, where yields last year did not match the recovery seen in other regions.
- South America factors lift soymeal, coffee futures
Meal is still the pack leader with prices of the feed ingredient boosted by worries over production of soybeans in Argentina. In fact, the midday run of the GFS weather model showed some improvement, in terms of offering rain, “showing significant rains of 1-3 inches over 75% of central, eastern, and northern Argentina in the 6-10 day outlook,” said WxRisk.com. This when the dollar was offering support to prices of dollar-denominated exports anyway, in depreciating, falling back below 90 against a basket of currencies, and standing 0.5% lower in late deals. And coming after a caution overnight from the US Department of Agriculture about Argentine soybean crop prospects, saying that “in Argentina’s main soybean production zone… drought has continued to worsen. “November-January cumulative precipitation was one-fifth below its usual level,” the USDA said. While most of the “overall condition of the Argentine soybean crop is still rated mostly fair”, helped by “dwindling” supplies of subsoil moisture, “soon, a majority of the crop will transition to the pivotal reproductive stages of flower blooming and pod formation. “By that time, more rainfall will be critical. Yields for the earliest sown crops may already be diminished.”
The US Dollar returned to form giving up about fifty cents on the day. The Chinese Lunar New Year begins this Friday February 16th which will cause the Chines markets to close February 15th through the 21st. US Markets will be closed on Monday for President’s Day and reopen on Monday night at 8pm EST. Corn finished the day 2 ticks off after posting a 2.50 cent range and giving up all of its intraday gains. It was the recipient of pressure from a weak Wheat market and strong Soybean move. Mexico is on track to import 13 MMT of Corn in 2018 which is commensurate to what it did last year. Soybean Meal led the way for Beans pulling it 9 cents higher at settlement. Traders continue to be concerned with dry weather effecting the Argentina Soybean production. Wheat fell 3.75 to 4.75 cents giving way to profit taking after having hit 6 month highs yesterday.