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Soybean and wheat volume spills moderately lower week-over-week.

Ben Potter, Senior editor

February 21, 2020

2 Min Read

USDA’s latest grain export sales report for the week ending February 13 didn’t have a lot of bullish data – with the big exception of corn, which ticked 29% higher than already healthy totals the week prior. Soybeans and wheat didn’t fare nearly as well, with each commodity moving moderately lower from a week ago.

Corn export sales climbed from 38.1 million bushels the prior week up to 49.2 million bushels, with more than 99% of the total represented by old crop sales. That tally is also a 12% improvement above the prior four-week average and topped all trade estimates, which ranged between 27.6 million and 47.2 million bushels. Japan was by far the No. 1 destination last week, with 19.8 million bushels. Cumulative totals for the 2019/20 marketing year 498.1 million bushels but remain well below last year’s pace of 974.6 million bushels.

Corn export shipments eased from last week’s marketing-year high of 30.8 million bushels down to just under 30.0 million bushels. Last week’s tally still remains 24% above the prior four-week average, however. Mexico (9.7 million) and Japan (9.4 million) were the top two destinations, with Colombia, South Korea and Panama rounding out the top five.

Soybean exports fell to 18.3 million bushels in old and new crop sales last week, spilling 23% below the prior week’s tally of 23.7 million bushels and landing 22% below the prior four-week average. Total volume also fell below all trade guesses, which ranged between 22.0 million and 44.1 million bushels. China was conspicuously absent among the primary buyers, with the top five destinations represented by Indonesia, Japan, the Netherlands, Mexico and Israel. Cumulative totals for the 2019/20 marketing year are holding 22% above last year’s pace, meantime, at 1.044 billion bushels.

Soybean export shipments fared much better, at 35.2 million bushels – a 57% improvement over the prior week’s tally but still 10% down from the prior four-week average. China was the No. 1 destination here, with 9.9 million bushels, followed by Mexico, Japan, the Netherlands and Indonesia.

Wheat export sales took a big step back last week, falling 40% below the prior four-week average and landing at 12.7 million bushels in old crop sales plus another 2.2 million bushels in new crop sales for a total of 14.9 million bushels. Analysts were mostly expecting a bigger haul, with trade guesses that ranged between 14.7 million and 25.7 million bushels. Colombia (2.9 million), Indonesia (2.7 million) and Mexico (2.7 million) were the top three buyers last week. Cumulative totals for the 2019/20 marketing year have reached 632.4 million bushels, staying moderately ahead of last year’s pace of 550.7 million bushels.

Wheat export shipments improved 44% from the prior four-week average after reaching 21.9 million bushels. Mexico was the No. 1 destination, with 3.5 million bushels. Thailand, the Philippines, Italy and Taiwan filled out the top five.

Click here for more 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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