USDA Weekly Export Sales Bullish For Beans

28/02/13 -- The USDA's weekly export sales report showed strong interest for soybeans, announcing old crop sales of 689 TMT along with new crop sales of 482 TMT for a combined total of 1.17 MMT versus trade expectations of 650-750 TMT.

China took 475 TMT of the old crop and 350 TMT of the new crop. Shipments fell away slightly from their recent frenetic pace at 822 TMT. Even so that brings shipments so far in this marketing year to just shy of 30 MMT, with outstanding sales of a further 4.6 MMT, meaning that the US currently has 94.5% of the USDA's projected target for the season already committed (and indeed 82% of that target has already been shipped).

Given the current loading delays in Brazil it seems highly unlikely to me that much of the 4.6 MMT of outstanding sales will end up getting cancelled. Meanwhile China keep coming back for more. The USDA have separately announced the sale of 123 TMT to them for 2013/14 delivery today.

All this makes next week's WASDE report due on Friday night rather interesting. The USDA managed to resist cutting US soybean ending stocks any further than the 125 million bushel mark (3.4 MMT). Can they do so again? And if they can what magic will they perform to make the numbers fit? Remember that 125 million bushels is only just over 2 weeks worth of supply of US beans.

Weekly corn sales were 302,600 MT of old crop along with 210,000 MT of new crop with China taking 67 TMT of the latter. Trade estimates were for sales of 350-450 TMT.

For wheat we got sales of 372,600 MT old crop and 152,300 MT of new crop against trade estimates of a combined 500-700 TMT. Unknown was the biggest old crop buyer taking 134,800 MT along with 82,500 MT of new crop. China showed up as taking one cargo of new crop (59,300 MT). No sign of Russia or the EU in there unless they are wearing the "unknown" hat, which is of course entirely possible.