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September 19, 2008
(See attached file: PR080919.pdf) (See attached file: PR080919.xlsx)

Highlights
  • Wheat futures ended the week slightly lower following a week of seesaw trade attributed to uncertainty in the financial markets. Major bank losses and subsequent government intervention had stocks and commodities moving up and down all week. After all of the major swings over the past five sessions wheat futures were nearly flat with the CBOT nearby off just 1.2 cents/bu , the KCBT down 3 cents/bu and the MGE 2.8 cents/bu lower.
  • Export sales remain strong with sales this week of 657,300 MT, up 44 percent from the previous week and 21 percent above the prior four-week average. Demand from Nigeria and Iran were notable, accounting for more than half of this week's HRW sales. Nigeria took a 109,000 MT of HRW while Iran bought 68,900 MT. HRS demand remains focused in Asia with Japan's pace 50 percent ahead of last year, buying 39,400 MT last week bringing total HRS imports for the year to 855,600 MT. Sales need to average 297,000 MT per week for the remainder of the marketing year to reach USDA forecast exports of 27.22 MMT.
  • The U.S. spring wheat harvest was pegged at 92 percent complete as of Sunday, up from 87 percent the previous week. The current harvest pace lags last year by 7 percentage points but is just 2 points under the five-year average. Harvest is complete in South Dakota and is currently 97 percent complete in Minnesota, 91 percent complete in North Dakota and 86 percent complete in Montana. This week's warm, dry weather was more conducive for harvesting and most of the remaining spring wheat crop should be harvested this week.
  • U.S. producers have started planting winter wheat and 11 percent of the crop was planted by Sep 14 compared to 12 percent last year and the five-year average of 16 percent. Indications are farmers will plant less SRW winter this fall as high input costs and falling prices have lowered returns compared with corn and soybeans. Additionally, producers will have less time to plant SRW because of the delayed corn and soybean harvest.
  • The Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics lowered its forecast for 2008/09 wheat production 1.2 MMT to 22.5 MMT. Much of the reduction was attributed to dry weather in South Wales where production was lowered 825,000 MT to 6.6 MMT.

File Name
PR080919.pdf
PR080919.xlsx
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