Demise Of Sterling Helps London Wheat

08/09/14 -- EU grains closed mostly lower, although London wheat got a little boost from a sharply weaker sterling.

The day ended with Nov 14 London wheat up GBP0.50/tonne to GBP119.50/tonne, Nov 14 Paris wheat was EUR1.75/tonne lower at EUR170.25/tonne, Nov 14 Paris corn was down EUR1.75/tonne EUR147.75/tonne and Nov 14 Paris rapeseed was EUR0.50/tonne easier at EUR324.75/tonne.

The pound crashed, suffering its largest one day drop against the dollar in a year, after news that the Scottish "Yes" campaign is now leading in the polls with only 10 days left to go to their vote on independence. It now stands at its weakest against the US currency since November.

In other markets, Brent crude fell below $100/barrel for the first time in a year, and WTI crude hit an 8 month low on a slowdown in Chinese imports.

The German stats office said that the country had exported 15.6 MMT of grains in 2013/14, a 14% rise on a year previously. Exports within the EU were down from 8.4 MMT to 7.1 MMT, but shipments outside the bloc were up sharply, from 5.2 MMT to 8.5 MMT.

Wheat exports showed significant advancement, up from 7.4 MMT in 2012/13 to 10.5 MMT in 2013/14.

German grain imports also rose, up from 9.1 MMT to 9.8 MMT, including a sharp rise in incoming corn shipments, up from 2.1 MMT to 3.0 MMT.

The USDA's FAS in Germany estimated this year's grain crop at 51.8 MMT, up 8.4% versus a year ago. Wheat accounts for 27.9 MMT of that total, with barley a further 11.6 MMT.

APK Inform said that Ukraine seaports shipped out 540 TMT of grains in the first week of the month, down from almost 664 TMT the previous week. Wheat (474 TMT) accounted for the majority of the volume.

The Ukraine analysts also forecast this year's grain crop at 60.6 MMT, second only to last year's 63.1 MMT. They see this year's wheat crop up 5% to 23.3 MMT, and barley output up 18% to 8.9 MMT. Corn production will fall 15% to 26.3 MMT, they estimate.

They also forecast Ukraine grain exports in 2014/15 at 30.5 MMT, a 6% decline on last season, but a very respectable total nevertheless.

The Ukraine Ministry said that winter rapeseed planting is 74% complete. Winter wheat planting is just about underway at 1% done on 53k hectares, they added.

In other news, French analysts Strategie Grains raised their forecast for the 2014/15 EU rapeseed crop from 22.9 MMT to 23.2 MMT, a 10% increase on last year, and a record volume.