SovEcon: Russian and global grain market news – March 29, 2024

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

On Thursday, grain futures rose. The May SRW wheat contract closed at $5.60/bu ($206/mt; up 2.3% from Wednesday). Euronext wheat prices climbed to €203.50/mt ($219/mt; +1.4%). U.S. corn closed at $4.42/bu ($174/mt; +3.6%).

Support for the quotes came from the U.S. corn acreage and stock estimates, which were lower than market expectations.

On Thursday, the USDA released its grain and oilseed planting area estimate for the 2024/25 season. Corn area is estimated at 36.4 mln ha, 0.7 mln below the market average estimate. Wheat planting area is estimated at 19.2 mln ha, just 0.1 mln above market expectations.

The USDA also released grain and oilseed stock figures as of the beginning of March. Corn stocks were estimated at 212.0 MMT, 2.0 MMT below market expectations. Wheat stocks are estimated at 29.6 MMT, 1.2 MMT above market estimates.

Wheat quotes may have also been supported by data on U.S. export sales from March 15 to 21. According to the USDA, net wheat sales were 340 TMT, slightly above the estimate of -100 to 300 TMT.

The European Commission anticipates a reduction in EU soft wheat production for 2024/25 to 120.8 MMT, marking the lowest production level since 2020/21. The decrease in production forecast is attributed to reduced planting areas.

The Saudi agency GFSA announced a tender to purchase 595 TMT of wheat. The deadline for submissions is set for Friday.

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