SovEcon: Russian and global grain market news – March 25, 2024

Daily news and market insights from a leading firm focused on the Black Sea grain markets research

On Friday, wheat futures rose. The May SRW wheat contract closed at $5.55/bu ($204/mt; +1.5% compared to Thursday). May Euronext wheat jumped to €207.25/mt ($224/mt; +3.8%). U.S. corn dropped to $4.39/bu ($173/mt; -0.3%).

MATIF futures soared nearly 4%, marking the largest daily increase since July 2023 when the “Grain Deal” was canceled. The surge followed extensive missile and drone strikes on Odesa on Friday. A fire broke out in the Odesa region where a missile hit but was quickly extinguished, local sources report.

Southern Ukraine remained under fire all weekend, as reported by local authorities. Energy facilities in Odesa and Mykolaiv regions were hit overnight on March 24th to 25th. Odesa region governor Oleg Kiper reported electricity outages in parts of Odesa on March 25th due to infrastructure damage.

Petr Khodykin, owner of Russia’s second-largest grain exporter “RIF Trading House,” has appealed to the governor of the Rostov region, claiming pressure to force the sale of his company. Khodykin stated that ships linked to his company, transporting grain for export, are blockaded in ports.

A large terror attack occurred in Moscow on Friday evening. At least 137 people have been confirmed dead as of now. The suspected shooters were captured several hours later in Russia’s Bryansk region, neighboring Ukraine, and Belarus. President Putin said they planned to escape to Ukraine, but he didn’t blame Kyiv directly. Kyiv and its Western allies assert that Ukraine is not connected to the attack. Western media report that the attacks were conducted by ISIS-K, a branch of the terrorist organization ISIS, which is banned in the Russian Federation. This information was also confirmed by various Telegram channels believed to be affiliated with ISIS. 

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