CASH MARKET WRAP: Wheat and soybeans slip as corn flatlines

30 Aug 2019


The wheat market trended lower over the week as sellers tried to stimulate buying activity.

The return of Egyptian state buyer GASC was the week’s big story, with 350,000 mt booked at roughly $1.50/mt less than a fortnight ago.

GASC’s business went to sellers in Russia, Ukraine and France – the latter notable as Paris milling wheat futures continued to slide and hit new contract lows over the week on an improved yield outlook.

On the Black Sea, September loading 12.5% traded at around $189/mt FOB, with offers in the second half of the week moving to a similar level but failing to generate any further business at time of press.

Russian 12.5% was assessed $3.50/mt lower over the week at $190/mt FOB, while 11.5% was down $2/mt to $185/mt, and Ukrainian feed wheat lost $1.50/mt to $179.50/mt.

In the EU, Southeast European 12% was 75 cents lower at $188.25/mt FOB CVB, French 11.5% was down $2/mt to $187/mt FOB Rouen, and feed wheat dropped $1/mt to $177/mt FOB CVB.

In the US, HRW 11% was unchanged at $202/mt FOB US Gulf over the week, while in South America nearby Argentinian 12% remains uncompetitive despite sliding $5/mt to $227/mt FOB Up River.


Both cash and futures prices flatlined over the course of the week, with corn finding a rare period of stability amid expectations of big crops and little demand.

South Korea’s feed makers bought corn cargoes, although the buying remained discerning while Vietnam’s October requirements are now largely covered.

Chief amongst the fundamental changes was the increasing competitiveness of Ukraine’s FOB corn market, with prices for October-December loading now competing into Asia’s destination markets.

For November, the APM-11 FOB Ukraine assessment stood at $159.50/mt, 50 cents under the APM-14 FOB Santos assessment, with Black Sea touted as a possible origin for two 2020 sales to NOFI and KFA.

For spot markets, Brazil and Argentina retained their position as the most competitively priced origin, with both origins continuing to tear up the export record books.

For APM-14, Brazil’s corn price ended the period at $157.25/mt – a 28 cent premium over the December contract – an increase of $1.25/mt or 0.8% over the week, largely reflecting the 0.9% increase on Chicago futures.


The soybean cash markets began the week at a slower pace with limited trading activity as demand for US soybeans remained low, while Brazil’s real depreciated against the US dollar causing sellers to be reluctant to lower offers.

But by Wednesday, demand from China had picked up, causing higher levels of origination in Brazil and increased activity, particularly for delivery on a CFR China basis, with at least ten trades were concluded overnight on Wednesday.

Cash premiums in Brazil fell during the week with paper Paranagua bids and offers reaching 120 c/bu against 138 c/bu for October loading against November futures on Thursday compared to a high of 155 c/bu against 162 c/bu on Friday last week.

The CFR China delivered price was assessed at $410.50/mt for October loading on Friday, unchanged on the week amid falling premiums against a board that only firmed modestly over the week.

At origin, the spread between full cargoes loading out of the US Gulf versus Brazil on a flat price basis narrowed by $9.25/mt to $37.75/mt on Thursday compared to $47/mt last Friday, aided by falling cash premiums out of the port of Santos.