EU Wheat Mixed In Quiet Trade

31/05/13 -- EU grains closed mixed in a quiet end to quiet week. Jul 13 London wheat finished the day GBP1.00tonne lower at GBP182.50/tonne, Nov 13 ended GBP1.00/tonne lower at GBP178.50/tonne. Nov 13 Paris wheat settled EUR1.50/tonne higher at EUR206.00/tonne.

For the week that puts front month London wheat GBP2.50/tonne higher with it's Paris counterpart up EUR1.25/tonne. For the calendar month front month London wheat is down GBP11.00/tonne.

FranceAgriMer said that the proportion of French winter wheat and winter barley rated good/excellent had improved one percentage point each from last week to 68% and 67% respectively. Spring barley rated good/excellent was unchanged from a week ago at 78%. Corn rated good/excellent slipped five points to 67%.

Another fairly dull and wet week sees crop maturity still well behind. Only 35% of French winter wheat is heading versus 85% a year ago. The proportion of winter barley heading climbed from 84% last week to 96% and versus 100% a year ago. Corn planting only advanced two percentage points from last week to 89% versus 96% this time last year.

Further east things look better though. FCStone said that Romanian winter wheat conditions are favourable and harvesting there will be underway by the end of the month.

Crop conditions in Ukraine are generally pretty good apart from one or two places in the relatively unproductive south and east. Rains are still on tap for the driest regions of Russia into next week as wheat crops begin to head. Russian spring grains planting is 85% done at 25.7 million hectares, say the Ministry. That's around 1.8 million less than this time a year ago. Of that total spring wheat has been sown on 10.1 million ha (78% of plan), spring barley on 7.4 million ha (92%) and corn on 2.3 million ha (105%).

Brussels issued 260 TMT of soft wheat export licences this past week, up from 247 TMT a week previously. Year to date exports now stand at 17.9 MMT. Corn imports are at 10.1 MMT.

On the international tender front, Iraq bought 250 TMT of Russian milling wheat for July shipment. Thailand bought 109 TMT of Black Sea feed wheat for July/August shipment. Japan bought Canadian, French and Australian wheat in a tender, passing on US origin. South Korea postponed a planned US wheat tender until the newly emerging GMO issue with US wheat becomes clearer.

The Buenos Aires Grains Exchange left their 2013 Argentine wheat planted area estimate unchanged at 3.9 million ha, up more than 8% on last year. They said that 9% of the crop had been planted so far.

Late in the day the International Grains Council increased their forecast for world corn production this year by 6 MMT to a record 945 MMT despite sluggish plantings in the US. They also increased their outlook for the global wheat crop by 2 MMT to a near record 682 MMT.