EU Wheat Closes Slightly Lower

EU wheat futures closed a tad lower Wednesday in quiet subdued trade.

Paris January milling wheat closed down EUR0.25 at EUR139.50/tonne, whilst London January feed wheat ended down GBP0.75 at GBP96.25/tonne.

The market is largely dead and looks set to remain that way until after the new year, said one trader.

Still, EU markets appear to have found their level, which is a better scenario than months of daily price falls. Rangebound is better than downtrend, as far as sellers are concerned.

London feed wheat is hovering around the GBP95 mark, whilst Paris milling wheat is stuck around EUR138-142/tonne.

Weakness in the pound is making UK wheat attractive on the export front, although with an exportable surplus of 3-4mmt, it still seems likely that there will be a large carryover into the 2009 crop.

Next seasons wheat crop will undoubtedly be lower, but by how much remains open to wide conjecture. In the UK the NFU, DEFRA and other leading authorities say by only 2-3%. Some would suggest that the NFU & DEFRA don't know their arse from a hole in the ground and live in an ivory tower, but not me of course.

Other private estimates say more like 3-7%, Nogger suggests 10%+ but everyone seems to think he's criminally insane. Pretty much like they did early on in the year when he threatened to show his arse in Burton's window if wheat didn't move substantially lower. But no-one like a smart-arse.

AgResource peg global production down 5% next year.

It seems unlikely to me that Mother Nature will be so universally kind to wheat this time round, although it could happen, lower plantings AND lower yields suggest a world crop 10-15% lower in my opinion.

We are, of course, a very long way off from knowing the reality of the situation yet.