United Kingdom

Gus Trompiz

GRAINS-U.S. wheat extends rally as Egypt sale boosts export sentiment

29 Oct 2018

* Wheat at highest since Oct. 19 after Egypt buys U.S. cargo * Reduced Australian wheat crop forecast also supports * Corn and soybeans also rise in broad rebound (Updates with European trading, changes byline/dateline) By Gus Trompiz PARIS, Oct 29 Chicago wheat extended gains on Monday to reach a 10-day high as a rare Egyptian purchase of U.S. supplies bolstered export prospects while a steep cut to Australia's harvest forecast underlined tightening supply among rival producers. Corn and soybeans also gained ground as investors covered positions after recent losses, though momentum was capped by a bumper U.S. harvest and a trade dispute between the United States and top soybean importer China. The most-active wheat contract on the Chicago Board of Trade was up 0.8 percent at $5.09-3/4 a bushel by 1040 GMT, having earlier touched its highest since Oct. 19 at $5.15. That added to a 3.7 percent jump in the previous session, when the most active wheat futures rebounded from a three-month low struck on Thursday. Egypt's state grains buyer, the General Authority for Supply Commodities (GASC), on Friday bought 470,000 tonnes of wheat, including one 60,000 tonne cargo of U.S. wheat, its first U.S. purchase in a tender since May 2017. "Even if this deal will not change the U.S. balance sheet massively, it demonstrates that American wheat is back on the international stage," consultancy Agritel said of the Egyptian purchase. Analysts have been expecting a rise in export demand for U.S. wheat because of a reduced surplus in top supplier Russia. However, tepid U.S. shipments so far this season have weighed on prices and upward revisions to Russian supply helped to curb further gains on Monday. Russian Agriculture Minister Dmitry Patrushev raised the country's 2018/19 wheat export estimate at a Friday meeting with major traders, who interpreted it as a sign that risks of export curbs were easing. Russian wheat again claimed the bulk of Egypt's tender purchase on Friday, with 350,000 tonnes bought along with 60,000 tonnes of Ukrainian wheat and the U.S. cargo. Wheat markets also drew support from the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics' (ABARES) reduction to its 2018/19 forecast of the country's drought-hit wheat crop to 16.6 million tonnes, down from its September estimate of 19.1 million tonnes. CBOT soybeans added 0.7 percent to $8.51 a bushel, pulling further away from last week's one-month low, while corn was up 0.7 percent at $3.70-1/4, recovering from Thursday's two-week low. Traders continue to assess the impact on export demand of a trade dispute between Washington and Beijing. New standards of protein content in animal feed will cut China's annual soymeal consumption by 11 million tonnes and soybeans by 14 million tonnes, according to a statement from the agricultural ministry seen on Sunday. But oilseed traders played down the potential impact on soy consumption, saying that rising soymeal and soybean prices would be a far bigger curb on appetite. Prices at 1040 GMT Last Change Pct End Ytd Pct Move 2017 Move CBOT wheat 509.50 4.25 0.84 427.00 19.32 CBOT corn 370.25 2.50 0.68 350.75 5.56 CBOT soy 851.00 6.00 0.71 961.75 -11.52 Paris wheat Dec 202.25 -0.25 -0.12 170.00 18.97 Paris maize Nov 167.25 1.25 0.75 165.25 1.21 Paris rape Nov 373.75 -0.25 -0.07 352.75 5.95 WTI crude oil 67.38 -0.21 -0.31 60.42 11.52 Euro/dlr 1.14 0.00 0.04 Most active contracts - Wheat, corn and soy US cents/bushel, Paris futures in euros per tonne (Reporting by Gus Trompiz Editing by David Goodman)

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