Monday Morning Musings

The pound and euro are both a little firmer in early trade. The euro is benefiting from an easing of fears over Greece, and a correction from being heavily oversold. The pound is up around the 1.50 mark against the dollar, buoyed by a slightly improved performance from the Tories in some of the weekend opinion polls.

The News of the Screws pegged the Conservatives on 39% vs Labour on 31%, whilst the Sunday Times had the two leading protagonists a little closer together on 37% vs 32% respectively.

UK Feb mortgage approvals came in below expectations of 48,400 at 47,094.

The dollar is weaker, which is supporting the overnight grains which sees beans around 7c higher, with wheat 4-5c firmer and corn up a cents or so.

Crude oil is back up above USD80/barrel as the dollar declines.

Belarus says that it will need to replant around a third of it's winter rapeseed crop due to frost damage.

Kazakhstan say that they've exported 5.5 MMT of grains so far this marketing year, and that they'd like to export more, but don't much care for current prices. They're trying to get government approval of increases in subsidies to remain competitive.

Pakistan's Ag Secretary says that they have 3.5 MMT of wheat reserves, which they can't afford to sell as world prices are below the level that the government paid. Meanwhile he also admits that they don't really have the ability to properly store grain for more than a year.

Net cumulative offers of barley into intervention in the UK stand at 107,734 MT to date, the Germans have put in more than ten times that quantity.

Argy farmers had harvested around 8.5% of their soybeans and 24% of the corn crop as of last Thursday, according to the Buenos Aires Cereals Exchange. With domestic prices at only around USD215/tonne before the government-imposed 35% soybean tax, growers there are less than enthusiastic too.

Will striking dockers in San Martin turn up for work later today? Reuters report that 5,000 trucks carrying grain into the port were gridlocked on Friday.

Meanwhile in Brazil's Mato Grosso the harvest is already just about over, at 98% complete. Farmer sales are running well behind normal according to Celeres as domestic prices have declined below the cost of production, and transport costs have sky-rocketed.

Although we have big crops everywhere nobody seems to like current market prices, from Kazakhstan to Pakistan and Breeze Hill to Brazil. Can a lack of farmer selling get complacent buyers to pay up?