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April 17, 2009

(See attached file: PR 090417.pdf) (See attached file: PR 090417.xlsx)

Highlights:
  • Futures traded the week mostly lower amid improved weather conditions in the HRW region. Wheat prices were underpinned by a 44 cent/bushel gain in soybeans, which rallied on production issues in Argentina and strong export demand from China. For the week, nearby CBOT wheat futures finished 1 cent/bu higher, KCBT was down 2 cents/bu and MGEX ended 9 cents/bu lower at $6.35/bushel. Soybeans closed the week up 44 cents/bu at $10.51/bushel while corn finished 14 cents/bu lower.
  • USDA pegged spring wheat plantings at 2 percent complete, down from 8 percent at this same time last year and behind the five year average of 11 percent. Flooding in the Red River Valley caused by melting snow and ice has delayed spring wheat planting in North Dakota and Minnesota. While it may still take several weeks for fields to dry sufficiently to allow for fieldwork, farmers have until mid-May to seed the spring wheat crop.
  • USDA reported that the winter wheat crop was 9 percent headed, compared to only 4 percent this time last year. The US winter wheat crop condition was rated 42 percent good to excellent, down from 47 percent a year ago. A late freeze across the Midwest was the primary reason the crop was downgraded.
  • Export sales of 121,500 metric tons (MT) for the week were at the low end of trade expectations and considered mostly neutral. Primary buyers were Iran (60,000 MT), Peru (32,500 MT) and Nigeria (25,400 MT). Commitments to date of old crop wheat are 97 percent of USDA’s projected total of 26.7 MMT. Net sales of 189,000 MT for delivery in 2009/10 were reported for unknown destinations (44,000 HRW, 18,000 HRS, 12,000 SRW, 22,000 white, 30,000 durum) and Guatemala (23,000 HRW, 12,000 HRS, 10,000 white).
  • Major freight indices moved higher this week with the Baltic Dry Index closing at 1604, up from 1478 a week earlier. The Baltic Panamax Index closed sharply higher at 1413, up from 1144 last week. Destination rates increased with Gulf/Japan moving $3/MT higher to $43/MT and PNW/Japan up $5/MT at $23/MT.

File Name
PR 090417.pdf
PR 090417.xlsx
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