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May 22, 2009
(See attached file: PR 090522.pdf) (See attached file: PR 090522.xlsx)

Highlights:
  • Futures traded higher this week as the dollar lost ground this week and finished at a 2009 low. Fund buying and spillover from other markets also contributed to the rally. Open interest for CBOT wheat futures and options was 345,164 at the beginning of the calendar year and has risen 14 percent to 393, 363. Open interest for the month is up 5 percent. For the week, July CBOT wheat futures finished 21 cents/bu higher, KCBT was up 27 cents/bu and MGE ended 45 cents/bu higher at $7.45/bushel. Soybeans closed the week up 55 cents/bu at $11.67/bushel while corn finished 9 cents/bu higher at $4.30/bushel.
  • USDA reported that 48 percent of the winter wheat crop was rated good to excellent condition, up from 46 percent last week and up from 45 percent from the previous year. Spring wheat planting was 50 percent complete, up from 35 percent last week but well below the five year average of 90 percent. To date the spring wheat crop is 21 percent emerged; also well below the five year average of 59 percent. USDA officials stated earlier in the week that between 1 to 3 million acres could go unplanted in North Dakota due to cold, wet weather following spring floods.
  • The dollar fell everyday in the past week, falling to its lowest point in 2009. The dollar index was down 4 percent from the previous week, from 83.02 to 80.02. Both the Bank of Japan and the Organization for Economic Development and Cooperation (OECD) released information this week that suggested recovery from the current financial crisis may be seen before the end of the year, encouraging investors to move away from the dollar. Concerns over the US deficit and the possibility of a downgrade of the triple-A US sovereign rating also put pressure on the dollar as it shifted demand to other currencies.
  • Net weekly export sales of 563.5 TMT for both current and new crops were significantly higher than market expectations of 300.0-400.0 TMT. Notable increases for new crop sales were to Korea (65,400 MT), Iran (60,000), Thailand (50,600 MT) and Yemen (50,000 MT).
  • Freight indices were mixed this week. The Baltic Panamax index closed at 2,293, down 7 percent from last week’s close of 2,474. The Atlantic/Gulf to Asia component of the BPI closed 13 percent down from the previous week at 26,574, while the Pacific/Asia component was up 6 percent closing at 16,309.

File Name
PR 090522.pdf
PR 090522.xlsx
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