£/$1.3759 £/E1.1666 E/$ 1.1796
CBOT wheat futures ended firmer on Thursday, supported by lower forecasts for global wheat supplies as per the USDA’s most recent WASDE report and the International Grains Council (IGC) also cutting its forecast for the ‘21/’22 global wheat crop by 6 million tonnes to 782 million tonnes. This reflects diminished outlooks for Russia, Canada and the United States.Wheat export sales spilled to a marketing-year low of 4.3 million bushels after falling 67% below the prior four week average. That was also below the entire range of trade guesses, which came in between 7.3 million and 22.0 million bushels. Cumulative totals for the 2021/22 marketing year remain a bit behind last year’s pace, with 184.1 million bushels. The European Commission slightly trimmed its estimates for EU wheat production in 2021/22 to 4.674 billion bushels. That would still be an 8.5% improvement over the prior year’s production, if realised.December MATIF wheat rose €3.50 as quality concerns continue to lend strength to milling wheat futures. This has spilled over to the UK’s LIFFE futures, which were up £2.75 on the day.CBOT corn futures ended lower on Thursday as export optimism competed with the recent rainfall for control of market direction. Weekly export sales of US corn were in line with trade forecasts at 691,000 tonnes. US exporters sold 100,000 tonnes of corn to Colombia for delivery in 2021/22. The IGC kept its forecast for '21/'22 world corn production unchanged at 1,202Mmt, compared with 1,127Mmt a season earlier.After struggles with hot, dry weather this season, Brazil’s Conab expects the country’s 2021/22 corn production to rebound nearly 34% higher, reaching an estimated 4.565 billion bushels. Planted area is expected to grow by nearly 4%year-over-year, to 50.904 million
CBOT soybean futures eased on Thursday as rainfall across the US Midwest aided crops, with losses limited by continued exports. Further flash sales were report to both China at 133kmt and 'Unknown' destinations at 132.15kmt (both for 2021/22 delivery). Funds sold 3k contracts of beans and 1k contracts of oil, however, did purchase 2k of meal. The IGC trimmed its prediction of global soybean crop by 2Mmt to 380Mmt, down from 363Mmt for 2020/21. Soymeal futures rose as markets continue to weigh concerns about another La Nina cycle in South America, as well as ongoing logistics issues in Argentina on the Parana River. US Environmental Protection Agency on Thursday sent annual biofuel blending mandates to the White House's Office of Management and Budget for review, according to two sources familiar with the action. The EPA is expected to recommend lowering the mandate for 2021 to reflect weaker demand during the COVID crisis while increasing the mandate for 2022, Reuters reported last week.
FX & ENERGY
The US dollar index is largely unchanged this morning, as investors await the key address from Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell later in the day at the Jackson Hole symposium. Uncertainty persists over whether the central bank will delay its plans to reduce stimulus or will stick to the plan to start tapering this year. Also eyed today is key U.S data on personal income, spending, PCE inflation, and consumer confidence. Staying with the economic data, released this morning, import prices in Germany jumped 15% in July, the largest annual increase since September 1981 and well above market expectations of a 13.6% rise, with energy cost leading the gains. In other news, Brent crude futures are higher by over 1% this morning, trading above $72 a barrel and on track for a near 10% rise on the week which would be the strongest weekly performance since September.