Analysts expected USDA to show better sales for the week ending January 9 after the agency posted marketing-year lows for corn and wheat the prior week, as well as a fairly pedestrian soybean tally. To that end, USDA shared some mostly positive news that was nonetheless unable to move the needle on grain prices Thursday morning, which had tumbled into the red on a variety of other fundamental factors.
Corn exports notched 30.9 million bushels in old crop sales last week, moving far above the prior week’s tally of 6.4 million bushels. Japan, Columbia and Mexico accounted for nearly all of the volume. Japan also contributed an additional 8.1 million bushels in new crop sales. Total volume was on the high end of trade guesses that ranged between 19.7 million and 37.4 million bushels. Cumulative totals for the 2019/20 marketing year are still just at 371.4 million bushels, however – still trending less than half of the prior marketing year’s pace so far.
Corn export shipments moved 8% above the prior four-week average, with 21.4 million bushels. Mexico (7.6 million) and Colombia (7.1 million) led the way, with Japan, Costa Rica and Honduras rounding out the top five.
Soybean export sales inched 3% above its prior four-week average, reaching 26.1 million bushels and landing in the middle of trade guesses, which ranged between 14.7 million and 31.2 million bushels. China (8.0 million) and the Netherlands (7.3 million) accounted for more than half of the total. Cumulative totals this marketing year remain 30% higher than a year ago, at 854 million bushels.
Soybean export shipments were also up 14% week-over-week and 13% higher than the prior four-week average, at just under 47.0 million bushels. China took nearly a third of the total amount, with 15.2 million bushels. Other leading destinations included the Netherlands, Pakistan, Mexico and Spain.
Like corn, wheat export sales rebounded noticeably from marketing-year lows last week to reach 26.1 million bushels in old crop and new crop sales. The tally beat also beat out all analyst estimates, which ranged between 7.3 million and 18.4 million bushels. Unknown destinations accounted for the biggest piece of the pie, with nearly 7.0 million bushels. Cumulative totals for the 2019/20 marketing year are now at 550 million bushels, besting last year’s pace by more than 20%.
Wheat export shipments also improved 30% week-over-week and firmed 6% above the prior four-week average, with 16.9 million bushels. The Philippines (3.1million), South Korea (3.0 million) and Mexico (2.7 million) accounted for more than half of the volume.
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