EU Grains Mixed Waiting Guidance From USDA

30/10/13 -- EU grains closed mixed with Nov 13 London wheat ending GBP0.40/tonne firmer at GBP164.90/tonne, whilst Jan 14 was down GBP0.05/tonne at GBP164.95/tonne. Nov 13 Paris milling wheat settled EUR0.25/tonne easier to close at EUR201.75/tonne. Nov 13 Paris rapeseed rose EUR5.25/tonne to EUR367.75tonne.

The market has an "in limbo" feel, waiting for more guidance from the USDA, although the November WASDE report is still more than a week away. At least we will get a little bit of help in the form of three week's worth of US export sales data tomorrow, which will bring them back into line with normal release dates.

One item of significant news value today was the announcement that the Indian government had agreed to reduce the minimum amount it would accept in wheat tenders from and unrealistic USD300/tonne FOB, to a much more achievable USD260/tonne. The old USD300/tonne floor price has been in place for more than a year. The new minimum should open the door to a much greater potential market. One analyst forecast that India's wheat exports could rise to a record 7 MMT in 2013/14 on the back of the decision.

In other news, Ukraine's winter grains plantings now stand at 7.515 million hectares, or 92% of the originally targeted area. Winter wheat has been sown on 6.168 million hectares, and winter barley on a further 1.1 million ha.

The Ukraine 2013 grain harvest is now 88% complete at 51.246 MMT, with the ongoing corn harvest 62% complete at 17.891 MMT. That leaves them on target to achieve a record crop of 28-29 MMT of the latter this year.

Russia has now planted winter grains on 14 million hectares, 85.2% of the original aim, but far better than the Ag Minister feared was likely (13 million ha) early in October. Rusagrotrans said that plantings could end up at 14.5 million, or even 15 million ha if the weather remains favourable, even though the optimum planting deadline has now passed. Plantings last year were 15.6 million ha, they add.

The Russian grain harvest is winding slowly down at 90.5 MMT off 92.1% of the planned area. Yields are averaging 2.23 MT/ha this year versus 1.88 MT/ha in 2012. Corn harvesting is almost halfway done at 49%, producing a crop of 6.3 MMT to date.

Russia exported only 1.627 MMT of grains during the Oct 1-22 period, including 1.227 MMT of wheat. Jul 1-Oct 22 grain exports now stand at 10.522 MMT, "only" a 7.8% increase on last year. That's not a huge amount all things considered.

Domestic Russian milling wheat prices are rising, with an unusually large percentage of this year's crop consigned to the feed bin. FOB prices ex deep water berths on the Black Sea are around USD280/tonne for 11.5% milling wheat.

Customs data shows that Spain imported 11% less wheat in August than the same month in 2012, along with 20% less corn after this year proved to be a bumper year for Spanish crop production.

Lanworth Inc raised their forecast for Australian wheat production this year from 24.82 MMT to 25.29 MMT, up 14.5% on last year, due to above average soil moisture levels in WA, VIC and SA.

Brazil has said it will extend it's duty free period on wheat imports from outside the Mercosur trade block to the end of November, and increase the quota for the same by 600 TMT to 3.3 MMT.