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Wheat eases further as weak charts, export competition weigh

U.S. and European wheat futures extended losses on Thursday as weak chart signals and export competition from Black Sea and southern hemisphere suppliers weighed on prices.

Soybeans were firm, supported by a rebound in vegetable oil markets, while corn was little changed as traders continued to assess weather prospects for South American crops.

The most-active wheat contract on the Chicago Board of Trade Wv1 was down 0.5% at $7.52 a bushel by 1322 GMT.

It earlier rose slightly before turning lower to trade near a seven-week low struck on Wednesday, when the contract shed almost 4%.

“For now it’s hard to predict if Chicago prices will hold this technical floor,” a European trader said.

Euronext March wheat BL2H2 also slipped further to touch a near two-month low at 272.75 euros ($309.35) a tonne, as a rise in the euro added to technical pressure.

Wheat futures have retreated since multi-year highs set last month as worries over the Omicron coronavirus variant and easing concerns about global wheat supply have encouraged selling.

A wheat tender held this week by Algeria exacerbated selling pressure as traders expect the importer to overlook French wheat and take supplies from Argentina and Ukraine.

A drier spell in Australia has also tempered fears over rain damage to what is forecast to be a record harvest.

Selling momentum has built up this week despite a string of other import tenders and reports that Russia is considering a smaller wheat export quota than previously planned.

CBOT soybeans Sv1 were up 0.9% at $1274-1/4 a bushel, helped by strength in soyoil and palm oil. POI/

The National Oilseed Processors Association (NOPA) said soyoil supplies among its U.S. members slipped in November, surprising analysts who had expected stockpiles to climb.

CBOT corn Cv1 was up 0.1% at $5.86-1/2 a bushel.

The risk of persisting dry conditions in southern Brazil and Argentina in the coming weeks, despite rain relief for crops in recent days, was underpinning soy and corn markets, traders said.
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Gus Trompiz in Paris and Emily Chow in Beijing; Editing by Devika Syamnath, Sherry Jacob-Phillips and Alison Williams)

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