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Corn and wheat also land moderately below the prior four-week average.

Ben Potter, Senior editor

February 27, 2020

3 Min Read

USDA’s latest grain export sales report for the week ending February 20 showed some relatively bearish results for corn, soybeans and wheat – all of which saw a reduction in volume compared to the prior four-week average. Wheat trends were the most positive but still unimpressive after inching 10% above last week’s tally.

Soybean exports showed the most downside this past week, with old crop sales sinking 31% lower week-over-week and 38% below the prior four-week average to 12.5 million bushels. New crop sales tacked on an additional 800,000 bushels for total sales of nearly 13.3 million bushels.

Analysts were expecting a more robust total for soybeans, with trade guesses ranging between 22.0 million and 33.1 million bushels. Japan was the No. 1 destination last week, with 4.0 million bushels, while China only picked up another 2.6 million bushels as it continues to struggle with the short-term economic effects of the coronavirus. Cumulative totals for the 2019/20 marketing year are now at 1.063 billion bushels, staying moderately ahead of the prior year’s pace of 936.9 million bushels.

Soybean export shipments also tumbled 42% below the prior four-week average, with just under 22.0 million bushels. Mexico was the No. 1 destination, with 3.8 million bushels. Egypt, China, Germany and South Korea rounded out the top five.

Related:Weekly Export Sales – Corn stays 12% above four-week average

Corn old crop export sales fared better but were still relatively disappointing last week, spilling 31% lower from the prior week and 26% below the prior four-week average, with 34.0 million bushels. New crop sales added another 4.5 million bushels for a total tally of 38.5 million bushels.

That was still on the low end of trade guesses that ranged between 31.5 million and 51.2 million bushels. Japan (12.6 million) and Mexico (10.2 million) were by far the top two destinations, a common occurrence in recent weeks. Cumulative totals for the 2019/20 marketing year are now at 531.3 million bushels, still significantly behind last year’s pace of 1.005 billion bushels.

Corn export shipments fared much better, jumping to a marketing-year high of 33.3 million bushels last week and besting the prior four-week average by 20%. Mexico (11.0 million) and Colombia (8.8 million) were the top two destinations, followed by Japan, Guatemala and Honduras.

Wheat saw old crop sales reach 14.0 million bushels, which was 10% better than the prior week but still 23% below the prior four-week average. Another 2.5 million bushels in new crop sales brought total exports to 16.5 million bushels last week. That was on the low end of trade estimates that ranged between 15.6 million and 25.7 million bushels. Asian nations of Japan, the Philippines, Indonesia and Thailand occupied the top spots last week. Cumulative totals for the 2019/20 marketing year, at 647.3 million bushels, remain moderately ahead of last year’s pace of 575.1 million bushels.

Related:China in the market for U.S. sorghum

Wheat export shipments also trended lower last week, falling 32% to just below 15.0 million bushels. Mexico (3.24 million) and Japan (3.23 million) were the top two destinations, with Sri Lanka, the Philippines and Bangladesh rounding out the top five.

Click here for more of last week’s export sales highlights from USDA.

About the Author(s)

Ben Potter

Senior editor, Farm Futures

Senior Editor Ben Potter brings two decades of professional agricultural communications and journalism experience to Farm Futures. He began working in the industry in the highly specific world of southern row crop production. Since that time, he has expanded his knowledge to cover a broad range of topics relevant to agriculture, including agronomy, machinery, technology, business, marketing, politics and weather. He has won several writing awards from the American Agricultural Editors Association, most recently on two features about drones and farmers who operate distilleries as a side business. Ben is a graduate of the University of Missouri School of Journalism.

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