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Export Sales: Corn and soybeans bounce back

Mark R Coons/iStock/GettyImages Corn and soybean rows with grassy field road between them.
Wheat moves far below the prior four-week average, in contrast.

The latest export sales data set from USDA, covering the week through January 7, held mixed but mostly bullish numbers for traders to digest. Soybeans recovered from a marketing-year low in the prior week, with corn sales coming in better than all trade estimates. Wheat was the lone disappointment, falling below all trade estimates and sliding 49% below its prior four-week average.

Corn export sales climbed 34% above the prior four-week average to 56.6 million bushels. That was better than all trade estimates, which ranged between 27.6 million and 47.2 million bushels. Japan was the top buyer, with 16.2 million bushels. Cumulative totals for the 2020/21 marketing year are still well ahead of last year’s pace, with 658.3 million bushels.

Corn export shipments were also robust, climbing 41% above the prior four-week average to 57.6 million bushels. China was the No. 1 destination, with 21.9 million bushels. Mexico, Japan, Colombia and Peru rounded out the top five.

Sorghum export sales were up noticeably from a week ago, with 7.5 million bushels heading to China and unknown destinations. Total sales for the 2020/21 marketing year are still more than tripling last year’s pace, with 81.1 million bushels.

Soybean export sales recovered 93% above the prior four-week average to 33.4 million bushels. That was on the higher end of trade estimates, which ranged between 14.7 million and 44.1 million bushels. China accounted for the bulk of that total, with 27.9 million bushels. Cumulative sales for the 2020/21 marketing year are far ahead of last year’s pace, at 1.511 billion bushels.

Soybean export shipments were up 10% from a week ago but still 12% below the prior four-week average, with just under 75.0 million bushels. China accounted for more than half of that total, with 42.8 million bushels. Spain, Mexico, Vietnam and the Netherlands filled out the top five.

Wheat export sales dropped 19% week-over-week to 8.1 million bushels. That was below all trade guesses, which ranged between 9.2 million and 20.2 million bushels.

Bangladesh was the No. 1 buyer, with 2.2 million bushels. Cumulative totals for the 2020/21 marketing year are still slightly behind last year’s pace, with 541.6 million bushels.

Wheat export shipments fared better, with 13.2 million bushels, but that was still 2% behind the prior four-week average. South Korea was the No. 1 destination, with 2.5 million bushels. Japan, China, the Philippines and Mexico rounded out the top five.

Click here to see more highlights from the latest USDA export report, covering January 1 through January 7.

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