EU Grains Mixed, UK Exports Most Wheat Since 2011 In Jan

15/03/16 -- EU grains closed mixed, but mostly lower. Renewed sterling weakness ahead of tomorrow's budget was a bit supportive for London wheat. Not that the euro was strong either.

At the finish, front month Mar 16 London wheat was down GBP0.05/tonne at GBP101.40/tonne, May 16 Paris wheat was up EUR1.00/tonne to EUR155.25/tonne, Jun 16 Paris corn was down EUR0.25/tonne to EUR155.00/tonne and May 16 Paris rapeseed rose EUR0.50/tonne to EUR354.75/tonne.

It was interesting to see UK customs data report that wheat exports in January were 310,000 MT - the highest monthly volume since Dec 2011.

That takes the Jul/Jan marketing year so far total to 1.4 MMT, a 21% increase on a year ago. There was a bit more good news on the wheat imports front too - these fell to a near-two-year low of 82,319 MT in the first month of 2016.

Sterling weakness may indeed be helping a little, although that's still far short of the UK's exportable surplus of almost 4 MMT.

It also means that we'd need to ship out around 350,000 MT/month during the remaining Feb/Jun period of the season to avoid a year-on-year increase in carryover stocks at the end of 2015/16 - something that we haven't done since 2008/09, noted the HGCA.

Competition remains fierce, both on the continent and beyond. As noted above, the euro itself isn't exactly strong, and the Russian rouble stands only just above recent historic all-time lows versus the US dollar, so other countries are experiencing a currency benefit too.

Indeed, Russia's March grain exports were a record 2.3 MMT for the month, beating the previous all-time high 2.16 MMT by 6.5%.

That total included 1.4 MMT of wheat and 700 TMT of corn.

The EU weather outlook leans a bit cooler than normal for parts of France and Germany, with drier then normal also seen prevailing over northern France, and much of Germany and the UK. Elsewhere, southern areas, Spain, Italy, eastern and much of  Europe and the Balkans are seen wetter than normal for the next 14 days.